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Session: The Arab-Israeli Wars:: Scenario S-2 Abu Agheila

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 12:14:50 +0000

by oceanweather

Four showed for play of Arab-Israeli Wars (AIW), the ultimate and most refined version of the venerable Panzerblitz system. AIW has better artillery rules, revised lower movement factors, split fire and move option for selected tanks, and morale for recovery from dispersal. Advanced game brings in helicopters, smoke, jets, mounted infantry combat, the Suez Canal and more. It is a well crafted package that every gamer should try. 

With four players we set up two simultaneous side-by-side games of scenario S-2 Abu Agheila, a 1967 Israeli - Egyptian action. The Egyptians have a dug in infantry brigade with improved positions and minefields defending across a single desert map backed by a reserve armored brigade (mostly WWII Russian left over T34s and Su100s). The Israeli's must penetrate this line with a combined arms armor-infantry brigade (sporting up gunned WWII Shermans and WWII halftracks) and exit units off the Egyptian rear area. What makes this scenario so cool is that the Israelis have a flanking armored battalion with killer Centurion tanks that enters the map in the Egyptian backfield. The Israeli's have the firepower and position to run amok but time is short, only ten turns to drive the length of Mapboard B.

In our play both games had a furious backfield tank battle develop among the sand dunes. In the first match, the Centurions cleaned up, in the second the Centurions were slowly whittled away. Meanwhile, in both actions, the Israeli combined arms brigade assaulted the dug in Egyptians with mixed results.

The Israeli assault troops approach the Egyptian fortifications

Centurions run amok in the Egyptian rear

Centurions fend off the Egyptian armor hordes

Losses begin to mount for both sides

In one game the line held firm and was not penetrated at game end. In the second a breach was achieved but too late to allow the Israeli's to exploit and exit. We scored, based upon exit and casualties, one Israeli and one Egyptian win.

It was super fun to play this classic again, even better having two games of the same scenario going on side-by-side to compare how the action progressed on each.

Session: Battle Cry:: Queen Victoria vs. The Brain Bug: a Starship Troopers scenario from the Age of Imperialism

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 07:43:22 +0000

by pete belli Queen Victoria vs. The Brain Bug: a Starship Troopers scenario from the Age of ImperialismStarship Troopers has provided the inspiration for several board games. The book written by Robert Heinlein is a classic example of military science fiction. In the distant future Earth has been united by the Federation government but humanity faces an external challenge from a race of intelligent Arachnids on a planet called Klendathu. Intrepid starship troopers of the Mobile Infantry cross the vastness of space to battle this enemy. This is my second BGG scenario featuring the Arachnids depicted in the 1997 film. The first session report -- Memoir Klendathu -- a Starship Troopers scenario -- used modified Memoir '44 rules but featured many elements of the original Richard Borg game. In the movie a scientist explained that the Arachnids could "hurl their spoor" vast distances through space to colonize distant planets. If the bugs could do this 150 years in the future, why couldn't they have done it 150 years ago? That is the basic concept behind this scenario. The crisis begins in the 1880s. The bugs have deployed near a sandpit in the vicinity of Horsell Common in Surrey. In addition to the infamous Brain Bug the arachnid miniature types include Warrior Bugs, Tanker Bugs, and Plasma Bugs. British units include the Guards Brigade, four battalions of Highlanders, cavalry, mounted infantry, artillery, a heliograph, and a "Naval Brigade" with a Gardner Gun. Her Majesty's forces are also operating an observation balloon.A scenario with each belligerent positioned on the opposite side of a water obstacle is boring. The narrative for this session report is based on the American Civil War battle at Stones River with each commander crossing the canal to attack his opponent's flank. I used the Commands & Colors: Napoleonics board because it was more evocative of terrain in southern England... and those khaki British miniatures show up well against a green background. The board configuration is based on Ordnance Survey maps from 1881. A magnificent resource.This is a sketch map of the terrain. The compass would point north to the top right edge of the board. While the map is not exactly to scale each hex represents approximately 400 yards. Wooded areas are treated like orchards in the original Battle Cry rules but block line-of-sight. There are slight rule adjustments for hills and villages. The canal may only be crossed at a bridge. The yellow sandpit hex features a special tunnel rule. More on that later.The Guards Brigade advances against the Arachnids. Infantry units roll a 3-2-1 sequence on the battle dice (Martini-Henry rifles at a range of about 1200 yards) and infantry can move one hex and fire or move two hexes without firing. A wooded area counts as two hexes for movement purposes.The mounted figure brandishing a revolver is a staff officer. A staff officer may be dispatched anywhere on the board to activate a single British formation during each turn. The miniature does not represent a specific individual and is never "killed" or removed from play.Artillery units have three miniatures and roll a powerful 4-4-3-3-2-2 sequence on the battle dice. During the Victorian Era a "naval brigade" was a large detachment of Royal Marines and sailors sent ashore to fight as infantry. The naval brigade in this scenario is supported by a Gardner gun unit. The relatively primitive Gardner gun was an early rapid-fire weapon that often jammed under battlefield conditions. Whenever the weapon is activated and two artillery symbols are rolled the gun is unable to fire during that turn. Gardner guns roll a 4-3-2 sequence on the battle dice and are treated like artillery units.Cavalry units follow Battle Cry rules with one important exception. Students of military history know that horses unfamiliar with the smell of elephants frequently panicked during a battle. This scenario assumes that the Arachnids have a foul odor that can affect mounted formations. The cube represents a cavalry unit that has not y[...]

Session: Battlestar Galactica: Daybreak Expansion:: Achievement Unlocked

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 06:36:03 +0000

by jhsa

Setup: Base+Pegasus+Exodus+Daybreak to Kobol (All In). Pegasus will appear at some time during the game, usually after sleeper, or when Standoff with Pegasus crises comes, or when someone mentions that it might appear but not during a crisis (or Cain is chosen).

Players: Alt Lee ([user=a1bert]a1bert[/user]), D'Anna ([user=jhsa]jhsa[/user]), Kat, Gaeta

I chose D'Anna based on number of times I've chosen her (very few), despite the underwhelming OPT/OPG and annoying handicap, but as it turned out, OPG was quite good for this game.

I'm dealt two cylon motives (Population 4+, Morale 3+). I worry that this will be hard, since losing by population or morale is usually the likeliest cylon win method.

On Lee's first turn the crisis has a hard skill check for the first turn, but it also has optional Damage Galactica twice choice, Lee chooses that.
Weapons Control and Armoury are damaged.

On my next turn I use my OPG to draw two super crises, for future use when stopping infiltration. Lo and behold, the other one is Fire All Missiles, with skill check condition to damage galactica twice. This might be winnable after all, possibly very quickly too if luck has it.

Nothing eventful happens before my next turn when I play that Super Crisis. I don't care about the success or fail (destroy 2 civilian ships), but that damage twice is nice, especially since the first 4 cards I've drawn are all zeros and any of them will trigger the damage. Admiral's quarter is damaged and food is lost.

During the next few rounds Kat goes in and out of space and occasionaly uses Research Lab to draw Engineering (in hopes of Repair). Gaeta also draws Engineering (in addition to his receive skills step). Lee tries to find Resources for Galactica in Quorum. No repairs happen. During the few rounds before jump (our crises had very few jump symbols, which was nice), I activate Basestar to attack Galactica, Command is hit.

Galactica autojumps and Gaeta chooses distance 2.

Crew tries to find Repair cards, but don't seem to be that lucky, but Gaeta fixes Command at some point.

I manage to damage FTL and fuel with Basestars during the turns before the next jump (and crew can't seem to find repair cards).

Next jump is just 1 distance (for gaining fuel), and that makes me think that maybe Gaeta is on my side, after all drawing blue should give you more repairs than apparently he got.

Two Basestars gather at the front sector and then that sector appears on the main board right before my turn. On my turn I activate the Basestars again and both hit, Command again and Hangar Deck.

Galactica is bust, all Galactica damage tokens in play, at distance 3. Resources 6,6,9,9.

D'Anna and Gaeta, who turned out to be a cylon after all (with plenty of repair cards), manage to win after one hour of game.

First time for me to win as cylon leader before the sleeper, Achievement Unlocked.

Session: Gloomhaven:: Tale of Two Parties- Chapter 8 (Scenario 5, Group 2) Spoilers Ahead

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 06:36:03 +0000

by EventHorizon [Note: Tale of Two Parties is being written primarily as a way to see if the experiences of two groups playing in the same game world can create a cogent narrative and to communicate sessions between groups.Spoilers, such as enemy types, are included but really shouldn't be relied on in your games as I'm not tracking the game while we are playing and specifics can diverge from what happened for narrative reasons. The first session report of the series is here: First DungeonCurrent Party: oSkrrit, Vermling Mindthief oBonecrusher, Savvas Cragheart oEsmerelda, Orchid Spellweaver oKorth, Inox BruteThe Hand looked at the information that the group had brought back. “This is very interesting. I wonder if it has anything to do with the problems in the Warehouse District a few nights ago. Slaughtered undead were found in a warehouse owned by a Valrath merchant. The mercenaries who attacked the Black Barrow a few weeks ago were seen in the area around the same time and now the merchant can’t be found in the city. Either they have joined forces with her or they have an interest in stopping the spread of the undead as well. Or maybe it was vengeance for a job gone bad. Regardless, there is more going on here than just the spread of the Cultists. The presence of demons is concerning though, as the Cultists will continue summoning them. Bonecrusher, are you, Korth and Skrrit up for going and investigating one of the other crypts? I have something else for Esmerelda to do and don’t have anyone else I can spare to send with you.”Bonecrusher looked at his companions and nodded. “I think we could handle that.”The Hand smiled, “Then go and god speed to you.”Outside the room, Korth stopped Esmerelda, “You didn’t mention the tree to him.”She shook her head, “I am content with that staying between us. The Hand doesn’t need to know of my indignities and it’s worth more to me to keep it quiet now. I trust you see it the same way.” And with that she turned and walked down the hall. Shaking his head and grunting, Korth headed off to his room to get prepared.Korth met Bonecrusher and Skrrit in front of the house when it was time to go. As they moved through the streets of Gloomhaven they saw a crowd gathering in a square. The group went to see what was happening and they saw a Vermling in rags being hauled towards a gibbet to be hung. This was the kind of mob justice that The Hand wanted to prevent. It hurt relations amongst the races and made Gloomhaven ripe for its enemies to harm. In addition, he could feel Skrrit start to tense beside him preparing to do something. The little fur ball was known for stopping similar affronts to his people but this was neither the time nor the place for that. Growling a suitably scary displeasure and hefting his battle axe, Korth stepped into the square. “Who is in charge here and what has this Vermling done to justify such treatment?” The men dragging the Vermling stopped and looked at the Inox, “Who do you think you are? This runty thief stole from my family and he’s going to pay.” A whimper from the Vermling was ignored by all. “It doesn’t matter who I am. Where’s the City Guard? Or are you claiming to be a magistrate?” Korth leered at the men, daring them to say something. “You know these vermin are closer to rats then people,” the man said desperately. “You mean vermin like my friend here?” Korth indicated a seething Skrrit whose dagger was mostly out of his sheath. “I recommend you just tell your friends to disperse and find some City Guard to help you sort things out in a civilized manner.” Korth showed his teeth, “After all, justice is what separates men from the beasts, right?”Muttering to themselves, the men let the Vermling go. The Vermling scampered off to an alley and presumably down the sewers. “We won’t forget this!” yelled one of the crowd. “You’re with that Hand guy, aren’t you?” yelled another. [...]

Session: Gloomhaven:: Tale of Two Parties- Chapter 7 (Scenario 5, Group 2) Spoilers Ahead.

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 01:53:03 +0000

by EventHorizon [Note: Tale of Two Parties is being written primarily as a way to see if the experiences of two groups playing in the same game world can create a cogent narrative and to communicate sessions between groups.Spoilers, such as enemy types, are in the narrative but tactics really shouldn't be relied on in your games as I'm not closely tracking the game while we are playing and specifics can diverge from what happened for narrative reasons. This session report contains spoilers related to the scenario and should not be read if you are concerned about those. The first session report of the series is here:The Story Begins...Group 2 Party: oSkrrit, Vermling Mindthief oBonecrusher, Savvas Cragheart oEsmerelda, Orchid Spellweaver oKorth, Inox BruteEsmerelda was resting again when the other three made their decision. On the one hand, Esmerelda was stable and no longer in danger from the poison. But she wasn’t in a condition to travel back to Gloomhaven yet. That meant waiting a bit longer, and waiting was something neither the Savvas nor the Inox were interested in doing. Whether driven by boredom, embarrassment of their loss, or a need for revenge, they were itching to go back to the Cultist hideout and finish what they started. Skrrit was torn. He also wanted to stop the Cultists but he was concerned about Esmerelda’s safety while they were gone. In the end, they thought of a good solution: Skrrit fashioned a mat out of leaves and the two larger warriors lifted her into the tree and off the ground. Once they had ensured that she couldn’t roll out and wasn’t readily detectable from the ground they headed back to the crypt. They made it to the crypt without any issues and hid outside for a bit watching for anyone coming or going. The quiet was a bit unsettling but so was what was inside. With nods to each other, they crept towards the entrance and prepared to make those inside pay for what they had done to Esmerelda. And themselves.There were guards in the entry, but not as many as before. These weren’t any more attentive than the others had been. Unfortunately, in their rush to revenge the three warriors ended up getting in each other’s way. Skrrit rushed in and attacked an Archer and managed to end up in the middle of a dust cloud created by Bonecrusher. A skeleton pinned Korth in place. But even with the initial confusion, the guards in the antechamber were worn down by the sheer ferocity of the attacks. As the defenders fell, the fight spilled into the hall where Cultists were again gathered. Korth rushed forward before the Archers further down the hall could react and knocked one of them deeper into the crypt. Skrrit followed into the hall and attacked a Cultist. Bonecrusher hurled a boulder at another Cultist, sending him staggering back. While the Cultists and Archers rallied, their attacks were ineffectual and they started to rout. According to the plan they had discussed previously, Skrrit seized a moment in the melee to run down and open the door where the Earth Demons had been that Esmerelda and Bonecrusher had faced. However, the plan was not to fight those demons now because they weren’t the primary concern. The plan was to lure them out and fight them in the hall. The larger concern was focusing their attacks on the Wind Demons in the other room because Korth had such a rough time the previous time fighting them. With the door opened and the demons disturbed, Skrrit ran down the hall to catch up with the others after calling out to the ambient rat population to help block the way and slow the demons. Unlike before, where Korth had faced the entire room alone, the entire group rushed in to face the Wind Demons together. However they found their way blocked by skeletons that had been summoned by the Cultists who had raised the demons. Undeterred, Skrrit bounded over the top of one of the skeletons and sank his dagger deep into a demon’s eye, which faded int[...]

Session: Mice and Mystics:: Solo Campaign | Sorrow & Remembrance: Chapter 1.3 | Kitchen Consequential

Mon, 24 Apr 2017 01:52:40 +0000

by Danneq

This session went pretty simply. Collin dropped the grape onto the floor right away (though in retrospect I should have waited until more roaches were in range; this way only took out one) so I had a bit of breathing room. He also took out the first roach, but failed to catch Miz Maggie's attention, so he wound up on the ground and the roach wound up on the counter. While Filch and Tilda both moved to attack other roaches on the floor, Maginos backed into a position that I determined gave him line of site on the roaches on the counter and started taking potshots.

Ironically, I rolled tons of cheese during this session--fitting for the kitchens! Fortunately, most of the cheese rolls wen to the mice, but this didn't prevent me from filling up the surge wheel. It started at four cheeses, so I didn't have much room. Brodie came out while I still had all the roaches on the board, but things went well after that. Collin and Filch took out two of the roaches on the floor in their next turn and moved into position to take on Brodie. Collin gained Miz Maggie's attention successfully this time, so we were good to go. Maginos also killed one of the roaches on the counter.

This is where it really turned around. I had been keeping Tilda in reserve in the previous sessions, operating under the "healers are squishy" mindset, but then I looked at her stats again and went, "wait, she's got armor and a mace. Durr." With the sudden realization that she's a tank as well as a healer, I sent her to take on the rest of the roaches on the floor, and then had her climb up to the counter with the fishhook. She quickly dispatched the remaining roaches.

That left Collin, Filch, and Maginos against Brodie, but the dice favored them this time. Collin was able to injure him, and then Brodie got in his only attack. Maginos and Filch further wounded Brodie, and then Collin had the final attack. Brodie yowled and ran off, presumably to sulk under someone's bed and lick his wounds. (Side note, I'm cringing as I write this up. My cat Jackie had a minor but very bloody injury yesterday, so I'm a bit twitchy on the subject of injured cats at the moment. She is okay, though!)

Then the mice booked it back to the tunnels and on to their next encounter so that the surge wheel wouldn't fill up again now that there were no more minions on the initiative track.

Session 3
Chapter 1
Page: 4
Page End: 7
Party Items: Fishhook & Thread
Tile 4: Kitchen Tunnels
Cheese Wheel: 5
Group Achievements: Miz Maggie’s Ally

Equipment: Mystic Blade, Leather Breastplate
Ability: Battle Squeak
Health: 3/3
Cheese: 3
Pack: Collin’s Sword
Tricks: none
Achievements: Cat Tamer

Equipment: Dagger, Walnut Shell Breastplate
Ability: Find
Health: 3/3
Cheese: 4
Pack: empty
Tricks: none
Achievements: Roach Master

Equipment: Maginos’ Staff
Ability: Chain Lightning
Health: 3/3
Cheese: 2
Pack: empty
Tricks: Determination

Equipment: Tilda’s Mace, Leather Breastplate
Ability: Major Heal
Health: 3/3
Cheese: 0
Pack: empty
Tricks: none

Session: Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan:: A first play. Japan divided; Ishida wins, barely.

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 20:01:53 +0000

by marktb1961

Pleased with my first game; I just about managed the give and take across the map in my favour. I took the Ishida side. Despite me getting and retaining the castle majority and its +1 card advantage throughout the game, it was very close; just 1 point in it and that changing hands twice in the last turn.

My opponent - also a first time player - was smarter in defending one of his gains late game with a judicously placed sacrificial block in front of Kiso. I may have missed a chance to similarly protect my early gain of Okazaki which I might have done with a delaying retreat along the Tokaido highway from Hakome, which I had earlier gained but was never going to be able to hold. Instead, in the final turn, I battled in vain to re-take Okazaki; my opponent's army was bound to survive with 1 block, me forgetting that he could simply retreat into the castle and keep it held. Fortunately for me, I was able to get in a final force march to take Takeda for the deciding point.

Obviously, I've only just started to appreciate this game but I do like the clean design and the way the designer's deliberately specific approach to the blocks and card mechanics reflects and helps convey the historical circumstances represented in the game. To my taste, it is admirable that this is achieved with just-enough chrome and no more. In that sense, the game reminds me of Liberté - another game which matches highly abstract mechanics (though even more Euro-seque in that case) and the barest of historical flavour to produce a game feel/narrative that is more than the sum of the parts. I am looking forward to more games of Sekigahara, as it seems to be as popular locally as its BGG rating would suggest.

Session: Quartermaster General – Victory or Death: The Peloponnesian War:: Two close games with Demos and Oligarchs splitting the wins

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 20:01:14 +0000

by Norbert Chan Don had bought this a few weeks ago, and they had played a number of a games when I was on vacation. Today, we had Dave, who had never played a game in any of the Quartermaster General series, Gary, Don and myself. Dave was Corinth, Don was Delion League, Gary was Sparta and I was Athens. Dave’s opening two moves was to make me discard 7 cards total. Yes, you can say that was probably not the best moves, get your nation safe than you can start making people discard. By not playing triremes or hoplites, it allowed Don to get into the Gulf of Corinth and allowed my fleets to get close to the Gulf of Corinth. I even got a hoplite into Argos through an event card. I got the sense that Athens was going to get wiped off the map by the Spartans, so I was able to delay the Spartan advance enough.I got a status card that lets you get 1 VP per trireme destroyed. Don was playing in the islands of Lesbos/Chios/Samos, but Gary had got an event card that let him build in Ionia and that disrupted the Delion League expansion. No one had any 2 VP status cards out – I had thrown away one that lets Athens earn 2 VP if they hold Attica (yeah right!). So it was a low scoring game. Don eventually got a card that lets him get 2 VP if the Gulf of Corinth was clear and the Delion League had a piece nearby. So I was always spending a card to get a bribery token so I could maintain my fleet in the Messenian Gulf. That would allow me to attack Dave in the Gulf of Corinth and gain 1 VP in the process through my status card. Dave would build in the Gulf of Corinth three times, and I would sea attack there three times. On the other hand Gary got the status card that gives him 1 VP whenever he destroys a hoplite in battle fairly late, but earned a couple of VPs that way.Meanwhile Gary had taken over Attica, and all I could do was muster a hoplite in Athens and prepare defence cards for Athens to hold out. My deck was drained of cards by round 13. On turn 14 and 15 I couldn’t play and lost a VP. Don still had cards, and could still chase after the game ending territories. It was close, but we were able to prevail. Demos 29 – Oligarchs 25.Dave is Corinth (yellow), Don is Delion League (yellow), Gary is Sparta (red) and I am Athens (blue). I'm still holding Athens, and I have a fleet that can attack into the Gulf of Corinth, so that was good for Athens. Game 2: I was Corinth, Dave was Delion League, Don was Sparta and Gary was Athens. I had a prepare card that let me build a city in Boeotia so I played that down and was fighting with Dave over the Gulf of Corinth. On turn two, I got a city into Boeotia and got a hoplite there. I had the status card that gives 2 VP if you hold Boeotia and Attica, but wouldn’t score that until after turn 5. Meanwhile Don’s first two turns was to build a hoplite in Argos not play and prepare cards, and Gary simply responded by land battling twice in Argos, so it was a slow start for Sparta. Dave had gotten into Lesbos first. The Demos team had a status card that gave them 2 VP if Oligarchs were not adjacent to the Aegian Sea. I used a bribery chip and an event card to place into Chios, but Gary had a prepare card that let him muster a trireme and land battle at the same time. Dave had placed a few of the status cards: one to gain 2 VPs if no Oligarchs were in the Sea of Crete, while Gary had the 2 VP status card for no Oligarchs in the Eobean Gulf. As a result, Dave and Gary were close to an auto victory, leading by 6-8 pts in the middle scoring rounds. But Athens had fallen by now, and Don and I could muster into there but I held off as there were more important things to do before game end. But now that I think about it, if Don and Iput a hoplite each, then at game end, it would be a solid 3 VPs. Don got the status card that let him earn a VP when a hoplite was destroyed by him, while Gary got th[...]

Session: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island:: Second Shot at Castaway

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 20:00:52 +0000

by Odysseus3 I played my first run of this great game a few days ago. I had some time this afternoon and decided to try and give it another go (the first game didn't end well).The Journal of Tristan James, Carpenter's Apprentice -- It Begins...I sit here on this Sunday trying to record what has happened. I will retell what I can recall. After the storm struck our ship, I was lucky to find a chunk of the deck to cling to while the winds and rain raged around me. I woke the next morning on a beach... a mangy dog licking my face. As I rose, I could see a large fellow with ebony skin striding up the beach towards me. It turns out this fellow was on the ship and also washed ashore with his dog. His name was Mangrove (and his dog was Barnabus). We took an assessment of our supplies. It wasn't much. I found a battered Storm Glass and a Broken Bottle (which I could possible use as a tool or weapon). Now what do we do? It is the first week of September. I remember the captain saying that in this shipping lane there are three other companies that send ships this way right before the winter. There is hope for rescue! All we have to do is survive for about twelve weeks and build a signal fire that can be seen from sea. That shouldn't be too difficult. Should it?September - Week 1The fates have been not too harsh to us. We have been camping on the beach. There is a bit of food and some wood we can harvest. I decided to send Mangrove to the East to see what else this island holds. While he was exploring, I decided to fashion a couple of tools. I made a crude spear and a crude shovel. While I was doing that, one of the native predators (something akin to a large feral dog) stole off with my small supply of fish. I chased the beast away with my shovel. Mangrove returned with news of a river valley to the east. He said there were some wild dogs there. He took my pointed stick and returned with a small dead dog (which we ate... and kept the hide for use later).The weather was gentle, but I could sense that it wouldn't be long before it would turn.September - Week 2We found a large stash of wood, but it was infested with insects and unusable. Alas. At least we are still here. We were able to harvest a little more wood and get some fish from the stream (enough for the three of us to eat for the week).I started our stockpile for the signal fire. It seems meager. But I have to time build it up. I found a few more supplies from the wrecked ship. A large crate of food was washed up on the beach! I dragged it back to our camp. After that, I spent most of the week building a shelter of sorts. It would be enough to keep the wind and cold temperatures at night away. While I was building the shelter, those dogs returned looking for food. I drove them away again, but fell into a brier patch and scratched myself up pretty badly. Nothing dire... but it took a bit out of me.Meanwhile, Mangrove and Barnabus ventured further east. Out that way, they found some rugged peaks! There was possibly some good hunting up that way. We would probably need more hides to improve our shelter, so that was good news. The jungle was nicely thick that way. It would be a good source of wood for our stockpile.The weather was gentle again. And at least we had a windbreak at night.September - Week 3The storms will be coming soon. I need some hides to build a roof on our shelter. Our supply of wood and fish seems adequate for now. We considered sending Mangrove out hunting, but decided to wait until I could make a better weapon.I spent part of the week fashioning a knife from the sharp river stones. I also made a couple more crude spears. In doing that, I accidentally cut my hand pretty badly. But we now have a decent supply of weapons.Meanwhile, Mangrove and Barnabus continued to explore. To the northeast, he found another river valley. There was evidence of[...]

Session: Battle Cry: 150th Civil War Anniversary Edition:: Showdown at Kernstown

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 17:45:22 +0000

by Cheroking1 Showdown at KernstownPrologue: Kernstown was a comparatively small engagement. While the Union had virtually an entire division on hand, the Confederate army only mustered two brigades. As a result, the units involved represent regiments rather than brigades. Union Gen. Shields had been wounded in combat and had turned over command of his division to Col. Kimball (BC 150 spells his name Kimble). The brigade(s) under his immediate command occupied the Yankee left. His subordinate, Col. Tyler, commanded one brigade on the right. Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson was in overall command of the Rebel army. Gen. Garnett was given command of the “Stonewall Brigade” covering the right side of the Confederate line, and Col. Fulkerson commanded the lone brigade on the left. Kernstown[ImageID=]The field map lies north and south. The disposition of the troops reveals several points of interest. First, the Union line is divided into left and right pincers that can threaten the Confederate flanks. Their artillery, though strategically located, is tactically useless unless the Rebels attempt a right wheel. Though outnumbered 3-2, the Confederate position is strong defensively with wooded terrain anchoring both flanks. Even though I was an active participant, this AAR will be a TPA (third-person account). An asterisk (*) signifies one flag.Commentary: Jackson opens the battle by bringing up his artillery. One battery is positioned in the middle of a fence extending across his left and center. The other battery is nestled between a stand of trees on his right. No sooner is the center battery moved into position when it is forced back to the rear for lack of ammunition. This logistical oversight causes a great deal of consternation for Garnett and Fulkerson. While waiting to bring his artillery back to the front, Jackson orders several regiments within easy reach of the fence. At this point, Kimball orders a general advance along his entire front, bringing a half dozen bluecoat regiments forward. Jackson, sensing an imminent attack, rushes his center battery forward to take its position in the middle of his defenses and orders the battery on his right into the woods to cover the approaches from the east. Kimball responds by moving his cavalry up to threaten the rebel left and brings a battery of artillery off the north ridge to cover the open field east of the woods. To strengthen the Rebel left, a detachment of butternut cavalry moves into the woods at the terminus of the fence line. The Union right remains active. A second cavalry detachment swings around Tyler’s infantry. His brigade now extends across the entire left half of the Confederate line with cavalry on either wing. Jackson sees the building threat and orders Garnett to attack in the center. His artillery opens up along with two regiments. They target a single enemy regiment in the Federal center which is quickly destroyed*. Kimball reacts aggressively and launches a counterattack. His infantry inflicts heavy losses along the grayback line. One regiment sustains 75% casualties. Unwilling to give ground, Garnett pushes back. His regiments eliminate another Yankee regiment*. Undeterred, Kimball continues to apply pressure on the Rebel line. A wall of blue confronts Jackson’s center. At this point in the battle, communication with the center of both armies completely breaks down. Jackson is vulnerable but Kimball is unable to exploit the situation. The conflict now shifts to the Confederate left. Tyler advances on Fulkerson and forces his cavalry and infantry to retreat. Fulkerson rallies his men; while two of his regiments engage advance elements of Tyler’s brigade, his butternut troopers slip behind the enemy and overrun a weakened regi[...]

Session: The Bloody Inn:: Woo Hoo Demonic Innkeeper at last

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 17:39:41 +0000

by edmil

After 14 solo long plays finally managed to crack the Demonic Innkeeper title with a whopping 227 points.

The gameplay was somewhat different in this game with me managing to get 3 Concierge cards out early in the game. I found early on in the game that the Landscaper and the Prince were in the deck so I formed my strategy around these cards and made my plays accordingly, I.e not touching Red cards and increasing checks - mainly through money generated by Room Service and guest leaving as well as a few high paying murders.

In the end there were only 3 Murdered guests which overall only netted 64 points However lucky draws meant that Room Service paid out very well on 1 turn 9 points on other 6 and 7 points and this started in round 1 as all 3 Concierge cards were annexes well before round 1 ended.

In the end there were 6 annexes plus the barn in play: Concierge x3, Landscaper, Abbot and Prince.

The risks I took were holding 2 x 26 franc bodies while I grabbed the Landscaper, it could have gone belly up at that point but my luck held and there was 3 turns without the police showing up. I also held the prince in hand until pretty much the last turn, luckily there was no need to call on his services and the risk paid off handsomely.

The end scores were Landscaper 40, Prince, 39, checks 130 and 18 francs on board.

I have only played this game solo and am definitely loving it. I had seen it at the store a few times and had bypassed it After doing a bit of research on the geek figured I would give it a go, certainly glad I did.

Would love to see an expansion on this, though I do believe what is provided at the moment still has a lot of life, or should I say death (image) , in it.

Session: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1:: Pandemic in PDX: Getting to Work (A rant about the game that has JULY SPOILERS)

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 17:39:26 +0000

by SWxNW That’s it, I’m coming out and saying it: Pandemic Legacy is too easy with two players. It just is. My wife and I jackstomped Late June and July in less than an hour, finding the Virologist on the second turn, all while not getting another faded city on the board and keeping the rioting and collapsing to nil. I’ve played enough Standard Pandemic to know that games can be dictated by the draw of the cards upon setup. And in a twist of fate that I can’t imagine happens to everyone, Atlanta happens to be a faded city that hasn’t rioted. So, into July, we have a research station that starts in a faded city. All it took to find the virologist was a single quarantining action and the three blue cards that we were dealt between the two of us. So, yes, we have a fortunate board. But why is this even possible?We achieved a brand-spanking new objective in the game that’s probably supposed to be challenging. But because of the circumstances, we had a research station in a faded city to start the game. AND WE ONLY HAVE TWO RESEARCH STATIONS ON THE ENTIRE BOARD! I’m totally aware that our board is unique. I would imagine the percentages on this happening are very low. But I’m frustrated at the outcome. Oh, by the way, we won July and now we get to put a starting military base permanently on the board anywhere in the world in August, which means we effectively only have to achieve two objectives in August (note: we haven’t pulled the Legacy Deck cards in August yet, so I’m aware we might get some changing objectives, but I’m ranting as if that’s not going to happen, so you know, many, many grains of salt). I realize that in my session reports I’m either complaining that the game is too easy, or that we’re so frustrated when we lose that we don’t want to play for a while. These complaints seem to be in diametric opposition to one another. But I think it exposes a lack of balance in the game to a near-broken degree. In our two-player campaign, we’re either winning in under 30 minutes with no significant changes to the board, or things spin out of control so fast that we want to defenestrate the box.Early on, we were winning by the skin of our teeth, but that was mostly because we were switching among characters, trying out each new ability as we came across it. Was it a mistake? Well, we can’t go back and experiment with different combinations of characters (like you can in Standard Pandemic) because the Legacy system specifically prevents you from doing so. Somebody in an earlier thread asked me if I even knew what the end goal of Pandemic Legacy was. Well, I’m now 7/12 of the way through and I still think the answer is “no.” The question leads me to infer that the ultimate goal is not simply to cure Coda. Isn’t that a major narrative flaw?I’m realistic about what Pandemic Legacy is: a board game with some trappings of narrative thrown in for a new experience. I think I was expecting something truly mind-blowing. Given the game’s status on BGG, the incredible praise from the board game media, from Dice Tower to SU&SD to Radho, I was expecting something transcendental. I’m not getting something transcendental. I’m not even sure I’m getting something fun.I understand that I’m in the minority here. I implore people to read my words and believe that they are well thought-out, and not reactionary backlash to some ethereal hype. I’m okay with the fact that people think this game is a one-of-a-kind experience. I don’t hate on anyone for thinking this game is amazing. I am even willing to say—despite my experience to this point—that I am willing to play Season 2, provided it’s with a group of four.My wife and I are going to finish this game. But I’d really rather play some[...]

Session: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1:: Pandemic in PDX: Walking on Cake (If You Don't Want JUNE SPOILERS, then why are you reading this?)

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 17:38:51 +0000

by SWxNW

“I feel like we haven’t played Pandemic in a long time,” my wife said as we were selecting our game for the evening. She was right. Ten days ago, we suffered our first loss with our super team of Osbaldo (Medic) and Esmerelda (Scientist). Esmerelda took our very first scar of the game. Coda was marching deeper into North America; Atlanta and Washington were faded cities, things were feeling hopeless.

We had spun so many games in such a short period of time, we had begun to burn out a bit on the game. The extended break did us good, however. Though I wasn’t super enthusiastic about breaking the box out again (I was really more in the mood for something like Castles of Burgundy), once we laid out the board, I was back into the swing of things again.

The cards fell our way in set-up. Two faded cities tucked away in South American and South Africa meant we weren’t in immediate danger of getting an onslaught of faded figures parading across the Atlantic. Our May win bonus allowed us the stem the tide further by roadblocking Sao Paolo off from causing more problems. We had a pretty moderate spread of disease cubes, otherwise. Insomnia (black) was the least intimidating and showed the most promise for eradication, especially since my wife was dealt three black cards to start the game.

The super team got to work, and stomped out diseases with relative ease. We managed to pull Remote Outpost and drop a free military base in Sao Paolo, put another military base in Baghdad, eradicated Insomnia, and cured Plague (blue) and Influenza (red) within 25 minutes.

It was just like in the salad days of Pandemic Legacy. The game demonstrated the true power of having the medic and the scientist in a Co-working relationship, and having the medic have the pilot character upgrade. It makes the game. So.



We emerged from Late June without taking on another faded city. Jakarta was the only city on the board that had an outbreak, raising the panic level to Unstable. Other than that, we had a relatively clean game.

It was such a breeze that my wife said, “Okay, let’s play July.”

We are now halfway through the game. The trend of ease with our two-player super team has established itself. The objectives are very easy at this point (especially since we took a permanent starting military base in Sao Paolo, making one of the objectives almost automatic before we even start a game). We upgraded Insomnia with a positive mutation, so now two of the three diseases are a snap to cure. Eradication of Plague is almost assured, and now we have the option of eradicating Insomnia to make things even simpler.

I’m beginning to worry that this game is too easy with two players. As discouraged as we get when we lose (and we’ve only lost once with Osbaldo and Esmerelda), when we win, it usually takes less than 30 minutes and we rarely have to pull more than two Epidemic cards.

I’m trying very hard to reserve judgment until the game has been completed, but 50% through I’m starting to draw some conclusions of the experience. We do still have six months to go, and while we played July immediately after crushing Late June, the bloom has faded off this rose for me. I’m no longer compelled by the Legacy system. I don’t find the story all that interesting. In short: I don’t care what happens next.

I’ll keep playing, though. If only to cross the finish line.

Session: Deep Future:: lost on first turn!

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 17:27:49 +0000

by bbacher

In my current galaxy, Era 3: homeworld was Treefer in Sector 33

First turn -
1st Grow, so now there's 5 cubes on my homeworld
2nd Expand, move 3 cubes to adjacent sector, leaving 2 on my home sector

Paid the upkeep for my homeworld.

Challenge phase - drew one challenge card. I could not meet the challenge either with a card or with the cube on my homeworld card, so I was forced to generate a challenge effect from the table.

The effect said I needed to add 3 random rival cubes. To do that, I had to generate a random number: 33!

Those 3 cubes wiped out my homeworld. Game Over.

Session: High Frontier (3rd edition):: Clear Water Lightning (Shimizu CEO Solitaire)

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 15:58:51 +0000

by TGLS Year: 2029, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Situation: Began game as Shimizu. Immediate goal; prepare to launch factory ship in 12 years. Available Purchases:Rock Rats look like a good choice, let’s recruit.Rock Rats Still Best Option. Event: Science Symposium. DecksYear: 2030, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Scooping the Nuclear Drill and Pebble Bed Fission for 3WT (See proposed Skunkworks ability for solitaire in living rules)Year: 2031, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Grabbing CVD Molding. Event: Inspiration! DecksYear: 2032, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Income; Building Towards Boosting the Rock Rats.Year: 2033, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Boosted the Rock Rats. Preparing for the Factory Ship. Event: Inspiration!Year: 2034, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Promoted Bernal.Year: 2035, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Bought Ti/K Heat Pipe and Cascade Thermoacoustic. Event: Glitch. No Effect.Year: 2036, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Sold Thermoacoustic.Year: 2037, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Income. Pointless Solar Flare.Year: 2038, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1More Income.Year: 2039, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Launching Final Version of Factory Ship.RouteEvent: No Effect GlitchYear: 2040, VPs: 1 Demands: 0 Net: 1Income and Waiting… Year: 2041, VPs: 2 Demands: 10 Net: -8Directory Meeting. First factory is going to be complete soon! Flora Factory Good Next Goal. Moving Bernal to Europa good move after that… Anyway, rocket landed on Hertha. Now the moment of truth… 2! Nabbed a claim! No Effect Space Debris.Year: 2042, VPs: 15 Demands: 10 Net: 5Industrialized and Colonized Hertha. Bought X-Ray Window and Rankine Solar Dynamic.Year: 2043, VPs: 15 Demands: 10 Net: 5Sold Rankine Solar Dynamic. Built Carbonyl Volatilization. X-Ray Window Cut.Year: 2044, VPs: 15 Demands: 10 Net: 5Picked Up Magnetoshell Parachute and Rock Splitter. Sold Parachute.Year: 2045, VPs: 15 Demands: 10 Net: 5Built Helical Railgun. Picked Up H2O2 Fuel Cell. Budget Cuts kill Rock Splitter.Year: 2046, VPs: 15 Demands: 10 Net: 5Sold Fuel Cell. Picked Up Flywheel Compulsator and Neutral Beam.Year: 2047, VPs: 14 Demands: 10 Net: 4Built Flux-Pinned Superthermal and Superconducting Adductor (Why is everything super?). Began Moving the Bernal. RouteSolar Flare, No Effect.Year: 2048, VPs: 14 Demands: 10 Net: 4Dirt Refueled the rocket. Moved BothYear: 2049, VPs: 26 Demands: 10 Net: 16Claimed and Industrialized Flora.No Effect Glitch.Year: 2050, VPs: 26 Demands: 10 Net: 16Sold Neutral Beam. Built VCR Light Bulb Fission.Year: 2051, VPs: 26 Demands: 10 Net: 16Picked up Amat Catalyzed Fission Fusion and Ether Charged Dust.Year: 2052, VPs: 26 Demands: 10 Net: 16Built Helical Railgun and Carbonyl Voltalization.Year: 2053, VPs: 26 Demands: 20 Net: 6Directory Meeting. Finish the Europa Rocket. Find the money/ops for a second colonist (!?). Promote the Rock Rats. Get the future. Built Superconducting Aductor. Inspiration!Year: 2054, VPs: 26 Demands: 20 Net: 6Built Curie Point and Amat Fission-FusionYear: 2055, VPs: 26 Demands: 20 Net: 6Fueled Europa Rocket and Landed on Europa. RouteBudget CutYear: 2056, VPs: 38 Demands: 20 Net: 18Industrialized Europa.Year: 2057, VPs: 38 Demands: 20 Net: 18Built Superconducting Aductor. Sold Amat Fission Fusion. Inspiration!Year: 2058, VPs: 38 Demands: 20 Net: 18Built Helical Railgun and Carbonyl Voltalization.Year: 2059, VPs: 38 Demands: 20 Net: 18Fueled Bernal. RouteGlitchYear: 2060, VPs: 38 Demands: 20 Net: 18Bernal Nearly Arrived. Launching Prospect Rocket. RouteYear: 2061, VPs: 40 Demands: 20 Net: 20Bernal Arrives. Rock Rats Promoted to Gypsy Alchemists. Claimed Didymos (4 I Think). Inspiration!Year: 2062, VPs: 41 Demands: 20 Net: 21Sold VCR Lightbulb. Claimed Didymos Moonlet (3 I Think).Year: 2063, VPs: [...]

Session: Gloomhaven:: Chapter 5 - Scenario #8 (Spoilers)

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 15:15:31 +0000

by sevitrm Spoilers ahead. Read at your own risk.-----------------------------------------------------------------------Chapter 5 – Gloomhaven Warehouse (#8)As we left the merchants manor we decided to cut through the Ward of Scales on our way to the Sanctuary. A growing crowd in our path is approaching and getting louder and denser by the second. We see a terrified Vermling being pulled in our direction by a group of gruff men. “Dirty thief!” a woman in the crowd screams. “String it up!” Glancing in the direction the crowd is heading we notice a disused gibbet in the market square. Looking at each we both seem to want to stay out of it and not risk the wrath of the crowd, but cannot allow the mob to dispense justice on their own. “You cannot keep it,” Ragnar states with a straight face. “Really,” shaking my head, “what would I do with a Vermling.” Pushing our way through the crowd we reach the Vermling and stop the proceedings, Ragnar seems to be rather intimidating to the peasant crowd. I grab the Vermling and help it stand up, keeping one arm around it so he couldn’t run away while Ragnar pushes the men who were dragging him away. “Do any of you have proof that he is a thief,” I shouted to the crowd. Seeing them stop and murmur disagreements I continued, “Then leave him be and go back to your lives,” grumbling and sending a few glares our way, the crowd dispersed and the Vermling gave us a strange look before running off. “Our good deed for the day,” questions Ragnar and I nod in agreement.We finally reach the quiet of the Sanctuary, make our normal donation and the human heads off to see her dog. “I’ll see you in a few days back at the Sleeping Lion,” she says crouching down as it comes running. “I’m going to get more training and bonding in with the pup.” “Sounds good. I will look into seeing if Argeise is really who she says she is. I am getting tired of feeling like we are being used.” Parting ways I head off and start to poke around the city guard offices. Over the next few days I found out that she was a member of the city guard but could not dig up anything on her activities looking into Jekserah. At the appointed time I arrived and meet up with the human the Sleeping Lion to fill her in on what I had found. She was sitting at our normal table and the dog was laying at her feet. “Name it yet,” I asked. ”I did actually,” she replied before taking a bite of her meal, “Ragnar, meet Lickitysplit.” The dog jumped up into my lap and started licking me as I looked at her. “Scary,” I say, picking it up by the scruff and putting it back on the ground before getting back to business. After discussing our options we decide that we want to see if Argeise was correct and that the merchant really has been using us to her own ends. We agree to stake out the warehouse the next couple nights and then move in.The warehouse was small, with only one door and a few blackened windows. During our time watching it we did not see anybody come or go so the next night we found ourselves sneaking towards it under the cover of night. With any luck we can get in and out quickly and see if there is anything that might help uncover of her plans. Hopefully the place is empty.The human skillfully gets the door open, as I keep an eye out, and we slip inside. She sets down a small covered lantern to give us a bit of light and we notice a small room filled with cabinets and shelves. The rattle of bones echoes as two undead move out of the darkness and close in. “More undead,” I grunt. “I thought we were done with the crypts,” the human responds. “I get the feeling t[...]

Session: Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle:: Roommate's first time playing Game 7

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 08:20:15 +0000

by Parsat My two roommates and I have been determined to play the game in order, from the first to the seventh. Yesterday after a long hiatus because one of my roommates has been busy (in which I played game 7 many, many times, along with the other roommate and others), he finally had time to sit down with us and crack the last one together. It was a highly entertaining game, so I decided to write up a session report about it.Although Neville's my favorite, I decided since this was the grand finale to just go along with the others and pick the Golden Trio. Our turn order and proficiencies went like this:P1: Hermione/Herbology (Hermione's his favorite, but he just decided to get a random proficiency. When I saw it I was like )P2: Harry/Transfiguration (Wanted a good proficiency so I gave him my personal recommendation)P3 (me): Ron/Divination (Just wanted to try it since that's the only proficiency I had never played)Starting villains: Draco Malfoy, Quirrell, BasiliskStarting Hogwarts cards: Reparo (x2), Crystal Ball (x2), Hogwarts: A History, Quidditch GearNotable plays- We decided to kill Quirrell first, because we didn't have to draw cards at the moment (despite the 2 crystal balls up for purchase. In fact, we actually killed him pretty fast, with me managing to get in a fortunate 3 attacks on my second turn.- However, Lucius Malfoy replaced him and then it all went to hell in a handbasket. We were trying to kill the Basilisk, but we suddenly hit a spate of control-adding Dark Arts, which was killing us and healing up the Basilisk. In a very short amount of time we had lost Godric's Hollow, having only killed one villain.- It didn't help that we were stuck on the second Horcrux for so long, which was killing our ability to really burst things down.- After we killed the Basilisk, who should replaced him but Fenrir Grayback. Ugh. This was the time where we all started getting stunned every turn.- Up to this point, I only had 5 purchased cards in my deck: Quidditch Gear, 2 Protegos, Crystal Ball, and Cho Chang. And because I kept getting stunned, it stayed that way for a good amount of time. However, I found that this was actually quite good paired with Divination. Crystal Ball + Cho Chang gives me an effective draw 5, which means that if I started the turn with both I would have accessed 2/3 of my deck, and then with the Items (4 total) played, I could discard the rest and cycle through my deck in one turn if all the stars lined up. The goal was to discard Protegos, which happened very often with this set up. Of course, this meant that I had no economy to speak of, but it did mean I had quite a few 5-6 attack turns.- Hermione was the only person really able to buy stuff, but we were getting very few offensive cards and spells (only Cedric and Descendo gave attacks). Her getting all the Reparos, as well as two Lumos basically meant she was support in the early game. Critically, though, in the middle she managed to get a Petrificus Totalus. Although it got burned twice in a row by Legilimency and Opugno, it was one of the factors that allowed us to barely scrape by.- Harry was the MVP of the game. Improbably, before the every-round stuns came he had managed to grab Dobby and Tonks, both of which are powerhouses combined with Transfiguration. Combined with Crystal Ball, Chocolate Frog, and some Butterbeers (trash items, but basically ensures he can transfigure every turn) meant that he was single-handedly keeping us in the game.- Even with Harry getting Dobby and Tonks as well as the Ring horcrux (after three unsuccessful rolls), we lost Gringotts really fast too.- We made a huge blunder. At t[...]

Session: Sagrada:: Soloing Sagrada

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 08:19:47 +0000

by briezee

Example of Solo Play. This was a loss, but a close one. I hope this helps people figure out solo play a little bit better.

Window: Aurora Sagradis

Tools: Tap Wheel, Flux Remover, Lens Cutter
Goals: Reds, Row Color Variety, Deep Shades

Right off the bat, I can see that I'm limited with Row Color Variety and can't score it more than twice unless I take 2 blanks, in which case, I'd gain as many points as I'd lose.

Placement: (column, row) where column in 1-5 left to right, row is 1-4 top to bottom

Round 1: Drew R4 B4 Y1 Y1; Placed B4 on (1,2) and Y1 on (2,3). 5 points went on to the Round Tracker

Round 2: Drew R6 R6 Y4 G5; Placed one R6 on (1,1) and the second R6 on (3,4). Added 9 points to the Round Tracker, total is 14.

Round 3: Drew Y4 Y1 B4 R1; Placed B4 on (1,4) and Y4 on (4,4). Added 2 points to the Round Tracker, total is 16.

Round 4: Drew P5 P1 R3 G2; Placed P5 on (2,2) and R3 on (3,2). Added 3 points to the Round Tracker, bringing it up to 19.

Round 5: Drew R3 P3 P5 G4; Placed G4 on (4,2) and P5 on (4,3). Added 6 points to the Round Tracker, total is 25.

Half way through the game:

Round 6: Drew R3 R5 P3 P3; Placed R5 on (1,3). Second turn, drafted on of the P3. Used the other on the Flux Remover to toss the drafted P3 back into the bag and draw and set a die. It became a Y5 at (5,1). Added 3 points to the Round Tracker, total is 28.

Round 7: Drew B6 B1 P6 P2; Placed B6 on (3,1) and P6 on (5,4). Added 3 to the Round Tracker, total is 31.

Round 8: Drew G5 Y4 P4 Y2; Placed G5 on (2,4) and B4 on (2,1). Added 6 to the Round Tracker, total is 37.

Round 9: Drew G5 B5 R5 B3; Drafted G5, used B5 to swap G5 for a G2 on the Round Tracker. G2 was placed on (3,3). B3 was then placed on (5,3). Added 5 to Round Tracker + 3 from the die swap, bring the total to 45.

Round 10: Drew R2 R4 P1 B1; Placed R2 on (5,2) and P1 on (4,1). I wanted to use the R4 on the Tap Wheel, but didn't know if it was legal to move 0 dice. Added 5 points to the Round Tracker bringing the final score to beat to an even 50.

Final window:

(Sorry for the glare! The window is still clear)

My scoring:
Deep Shades (4 sixes and 5 fives = 4 sets) 4 @ 2 points = 8 points
Row Column Variety: only the bottom 2 rows 2 @ 6 points = 12 points
Shades of Red (6 + 6 + 3 + 5 + 2) = 22 points
Holes: none.
Total = 42. Loss.

Session: Pokémon Trading Card Game:: In Which I Battle My Son's Friend

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 08:15:25 +0000

by big_buddha Recently, I have had several epic Pokemon battles with my kids. There have been dramatic turnarounds, victories determined by lucky coin flips, and matches where the loser has only had a single prize card left. What I am about to describe to you is not one of those battles.Here's what happened: my son's friend came over to spend the night. My son made sure to ask him to bring over his Pokemon cards. After plenty of video games, the two finally pulled out their cards. My son went with his ridiculously twinked out water/fire deck, which is loaded with several extremely powerful basic Pokemon, as well as a couple of Blastoises. Part of the balancing aspect of the extremely powerful Pokemon is that their attacks require a lot of energy. However, Blastoise's special ability lets him attach any number of water energies in his hand to a single Pokemon each turn. To heighten this advantage, my son has several Enhanced Energy Retrievals and a couple of Fishermen. This deck is fairly evenly matched against a more agile psychic/electric deck I have constructed from my son's cards, whose primary Pokemon include Mewtwo, Stunfisk, and Ampharos.When my son and his friend got down to battling, my son found himself on the ropes early. He could not get a Blastoise into his hand, and as a result, had trouble getting enough energy attached to his Pokemon. By the time I started watching the match, his friend was getting a little cocky, and talking a little smack. This lasted until I noticed him play a basic, then put a stage one and a stage two on it all in the same turn. I pointed out that he couldn't do that. To be fair, the way the rule is defined, it is easy to misunderstand. You can evolve multiple Pokemon on the same turn, but you can't evolve any of them more than one stage on a single turn, unless you have a trainer in play that lets you do so. In any event, that ended up being the turning point in the match. I'm not sure if he had done the multistage evolution previously in the game, but my son's friend found his attack sputtering as it took multiple turns to get his stage two out. Meanwhile, my son had gotten enough energy attached to a couple of his ridiculous EX Pokemon to demolish the competition. My son's friend drew the first four prize cards of the match, but then my son drew all six of his.After that, the two of them went back to their various non-Pokemon diversions. However, my son was adamant that his friend play against me. I got the feeling his friend was not terribly keen on this idea, but he did not want to admit it out loud. I was noncommittal myself, but my son was determined, and the next day, he got his way.When I did agree to play, I suggested using a weaker fighting-type deck I had put together. However, my son insisted I use the Mewtwo one. I sat down with that deck against his friend's water/fire deck. To be honest, I can't recall a single specific Pokemon from his deck. What I do recall is a seemingly never-ending stream on basics and stage ones with 80 HP or less. For my part, I started with my sentimental favorite, Farfetch'd, as my active Pokemon. Farfetch'd, the little duck who hits you with, of all things, a leek. How could that be anything other than the most awesome thing ever? I used to annoy my kids by shouting, "Have a vegetable!" when using Leek Slap. However, I digress. I also started with Mareep and Stunfisk on my bench. A handy trainer then allowed me to pull Mewtwo out of my deck. From the outset, I was doing well with Pokemon. However, energy was in short supply. This is normally not a problem, [...]

Session: Zephyr: Winds of Change:: My Second Solo Mission (22/4/17) - Facing Samson's Wrath

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 03:25:57 +0000

by Tusken Raider People need the northern trade routes to survive but Samson doesn’t care. Samson calls himself a Warlord around these parts, but I have another name for him which I dare not repeat here. I heard of a call for Guns For Hire to try to end his blockade. Some tried, none succeeded. Fresh after the success of my last mission, I decided to see if my trusty Spitfire might have differing fortune. I had to sell some of my ship upgrades in order to buy food recently – things have been tight. Nonetheless, I managed to hold onto my two trusty Wildfire Cannons and my Wind Rider to help me evade enemy attacks. I picked up two crew – a dapper gent called Sebastian T. Keeler who I think will be very helpful when my luck escapes me, and Joshua James, a cleanly-bearded man who seems to like to support Keeler in his endeavours.Samson is a madman. His Corbis Cannon has been known to scythe through approaching ships before they can even damage him. He also has backups of some Hasty Reinforcements if he needs. I know that this will be extremely challenging. We set off into the Sinwell Seas. These bright and pristine seas are exactly what we need to lift our spirits as we head toward our greatest challenge so far.As we set off, we hear that the city of Flotsam has once again come under attack. No-one is safe nowadays, it seems. Before we reach Samson, we shall have to rescue Flotsam. Flotsam will either take us 4 or 5 days – we’ll have to make a decision which route to take as we draw closer. If we’re going to defeat Samson, we’re going to need to add some serious upgrades to this ship, and the best way to do that, I think, is to salvage them from defeated ships. We head out looking for trouble on the first day, and it’s not long before it finds us. Flying at a high altitude, the clouds below break away to reveal a well-equipped enemy vessel. They have not spotted us. As we draw in, I see that it’s the Condor Class ship known as The Executioner. Because it doesn’t see us, we will get a free attack. The surprise attack has to count because if we don’t destroy it before it fires, it can dish out significant damage against my Spitfire. My skills as an Armed Acrobat are more than sufficient and a blame of flame takes over the Executioner killing everyone on board. We won’t be that lucky again.I pull enough for 5 Scrap from the vessel and we fly on. A good first day’s hunting. The second day, using a large cluster of clouds as cover, I hide myself from a group of ships we spotted on the horizon. Though the haze obstructs my view, I can barely make out the tell-tale signs of a commander. If we’re going to equip the Spitfire, we’re going to have to be brave. As we fly forward through the cloud, the three ships become clearer. It’s Brutis in a Tub class ship – not much damage output but chunky. With him is the B’le Mak, a Defiler class. This can put out some hurt, as can the third ship – the Condor class ship known as The Disturbance. I’ll have to leave Brutis until the end. Of all the ships, it’s the Condor that can do the most damage, so we target that first. As we draw in, though, I’ve got the attack angle wrong, and I instead have to evade. Nonetheless, with clever flying, I can take out the Condor. I evade Brutis’ shot and Loop Da Loop to the point that The Disturbance ends up firing on itself and blows itself out of the sky. We are lucky that the B’le Mak took up a very defensive position and ended up not even being able to fire at us. One down, two to go.I open up one [...]

Session: Memoir '44: The Battles of Khalkhin-Gol:: Khalkhin-Gol Campaign (Part 4) Soviet Infiltration

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 03:25:34 +0000

by jesters_race Soviet InfiltrationSo we are back to a standard scenario now after that surprising win by the Japanese, really thought the Russian left would have crushed the Japanese.5 medals ae need for victory in this one with the Russians having the possibility of ending the game with a sudden death victory if they can capture the HQ on the Japanese base line. The Russians start with a force on the Japanese base line too, so the Japanese are going to have to be on guard.The Russians take a big hot before the scenario even starts as their attrition roll had them lose 3 tank figures and they only start with one armoured unit. This will remove it from the game and give the Japanese a medal to begin with.The Japanese had captured two objective medals so they rolled for reinforcement and receive an infantry unit where they deploy on their right flank at the rear of the hill to act as a reserve for the right and cover the HQ.The rest of the attrition results are applied to the forces, the Russians have selected a card for the commissar and we are good to go.Early GameThe Japanese start by ordering some infantry and artillery in the centre to target one of the infiltrating Russian infantry units, causing light casualties. The Russians then advance along the whole front, with infantry and an armoured car moving up on their right and reducing the Japanese defenders on the hills. Ranged fire comes in from the Russian artillery and some infantry, softening up some Japanese infantry in the centre. The Japanese then push back against the advancing Russians on their left inflicting light casualties. The fight for the hills continues and the Russians destroy two of the Japanese defenders and occupy the high ground, while forcing another unit to flee. Mid GameThe Japanese can only respond by sending an armoured car in for a reconnaissance, though they destroy one of the Russian units, overrunning them and causing loses on another. An infantry assault is ordered on the Russian right, infantry pours into the centre destroying some Japanese infantry and reducing the artillery. The Japanese respond by leaving the hills in the centre an attack the Russians, eliminating an infantry unit and sending one into retreat with losses. The Russians attempt to finish off the lone artillery in the centre but are unable to hit their mark. End GameThe Japanese advance onto the Russians to blunten their attack towards the HQ tents and hopefully take the win. They are able destroy one of the infantry units but the other is able to retreat out of range of the tanketts and armoured cars. The Russians go behind enemy lines, though the infantry the Russians wanted to use it on are now not in a position to do what they wanted to do (eliminate the tankett unit and occupy the HQ tents). The Russian infantry decides to take a risk and attack the armoured cars and are able to destroy them. The Japanese now look for the best way to end the battle, they conduct an infantry assault from their right and cut off the Russian MG unit in the centre. They don’t allow for escape and make short work of the Russians to take the win.Japanese VictoryRussians 4 / Japanese 5Attrition Results: [...]

Session: Pacific War:: Relief of Wake AAR (Battle Scenario 1, Illustrated)

Sun, 23 Apr 2017 01:12:19 +0000

by M St This was my first PW game with Neville. He had gone through the Pearl Harbor Engagement Scenario and had a good grasp of the system, so we decided to start with the first Battle Scenario, Relief of Wake. This turned out to be a good starter because it does not have a Contact Phase, so you just get right into the normal Battle Cycle turn sequence.The scenario stars with the US carriers, racing to the relief of the beleaguered garrison, somewhat spread around, so the Japanese have to make hay while they are far away. The Japanese transports carrying the 144 Infantry regiment are halfway between Kwajalein and Wake, while the carriers, Hiryu and Soryu, are about six hundred miles north of the island. A cruiser force was in a blocking position to the east. The closest US carrier TF, with Saratoga, is about 700 miles NE of Wake, Lexington 800 miles SE. Enterprise is a thousand miles away at this point. Battle cycles are indicated by giving the Lighting Condition of each Battle cycle in bold. The initial lighting condition was Day PM. The Japanese closed into strike range and launched their planes against the island. Both the Japanese carriers and transports were detected, but not identified as such. The US air unit on the island was not Alerted so they decided to hit the airfield, and the single air step present there was destroyed. The US reacted to this by sending the Lexington air group to the island.Dusk: The Americans had Advantage and realised that if they stayed, the following night turn would see the Japanese fleet turning up and bombarding the airfield with the planes on the ground, so they pulled out and flew back to Lexington, losing 15 planes to the Dusk landing. The Japanese attacked Wake again, including 2E (2 engine) bombers from Kwajalein. The bombers went for the garrison but failed to achieve a hit. Each carrier lost 15 planes on landing in the gathering darkness (an extremely unlikely outcome since the Japanese have elite L2 carrier pilots - 1 in 9 chance). Japanese carrier air was significantly weakened. The Japanese transports reached the island but the infantry was not yet unloaded (since the hex contains a fortification!). The Japanese cruisers also reached the island but did not bombard it (due to being the Disadvantage Player on this turn, the Bombardment Phase took place before their move).Night: The Japanese ships bombarded the fortifications which were rendered ineffective after a short exchange of gunfire. The Japanese then opened up their naval bombardment, but failed to have an impact on the garrison. The amphibious assault still succeeded, but with a step loss to the Japanese infantry. The next morning (Day AM) the Japanese were the Advantage Player. Their ships again bombarded the garrison, and this time the Marines broke. The carriers were not mutually in range, but the Lexington TF (TF02) was detected by the Japanese cruiser floatplanes around Wake and bombed by 45 Japanese 2E aircraft from Kwajalein, with a 45 plane escort. The escorts and CAP tangled over the task force, but without causing significant losses, and the attacks missed the carrier. With the Marines Broken, the chances of the invaders improved significantly and they eliminated the garrison in ground combat. The outcome of the battle now depended solely on who would sink more enemy ships. The US carriers kept sailing westwards, sailing closer to what they decided must be Hiryu and Soryu, and bypassing the cruiser force around Wake.In the afte[...]

Session: Element:: SPOILER! 1st Element "Eureka" Move!

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 21:12:43 +0000

by DeepFishTaluva SPOILER ALERT!I bought Element off the back off the idea and general info and never saw a great move in a game before (only model egs). So read on at your own judgement - I'd advise: Go buy Element first, discover these things for yourself first, and thank me later! Read on...So it's taken a good number of games to get one of these, and this was my first big "Eureka" moment. Though that said, the fact I'm playing and then replaying so soon after buying the game, is a sound indication of what a good game Element is steadily proving itself to be.I like to pick the Grey coloured sage, who I've taken to naming "Old Greybeard". I've mostly lost and often been the Sage trapped, too leading to the other 2 Sages also losing (sorry)! So when this pulled off...First, the Orange sage (I call her "Silent Assassin"), sent the proto River to the Green sage (she's the last I've yet to name; White Sage I call "Sly Fox") who then sent it after me in a clever move blocking me in (Old Greybeard at the top of the board) - so once again Water creating River was playing early game havoc! I dipped in for 4 element stones and got 3 wind and 1 earth. No Water stones so I could not turn the River around which was unlucky as it meant I was trapped. Except the Wind stones was a bit of good luck! I can jump the ring of fire and cower in the top-left corner... I was attempting this then I suddenly realized that was still terrible place to be stuck as I could not double jump over the other side with only 1 legal move. Then I realized with the "Rule of Replacement" I could replace the head of the River (Water stone) with Earth (black):And then use one of my Wind stones to replace Earth stone for a second Replacement. Then move 1 space to then jump x2 wind stones to safety... This was the Eureka moment, doing 2 replacements and ripping open a Wind tunnel...Then make use of the remaining x2 Wind stones to create a 2 stone Whirlwind leap even further to safety away from the jaws of Water and Fire to the opposite side of the board! Looking at the sequence, it may seem obvious but it was completely emergent with a little chance thrown in at each stage (eg those Rivers being bent to very different intentions than their original use (not for the 1st time!), but mostly I'd played my stones to look for solutions, until the corner made me think harder and what a Eureka! moment it then was. Of course I got luck with Wind stones, but I only needed one to get some safety, the extra 2 were icing on the Great Escape cake!It's taken >10 games for such a leap of understanding; probably because every game plays out from the beginning very differently. This is the sort of eg I'll mention in my review when I finally play more and can write up. Actually after this game I ended up getting another Eureka (2nd) moment with the Water Element and then a 3rd with Fire! Also experienced a 1st proper "End-Game" which I'll delve into later, which was another fascinating experience and very different set of problems! [...]

Session: Fields of Arle:: Zeromus vs IirionClaus, game #10

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 19:12:03 +0000

by Zeromus Fields of Arle: Zeromus versus IirionClaus, 2017-04-20Starting BuildingsWood Trader, Schnapps Distillery, Litter Storage, Loading StationBakehouse, SmithyMilk House Inn, Farmer’s Inn, Gulf House InnEl-ad (Red) is first.Summer 1R: Dike Builder for a Cow, a DikeY: Colonist for a Horse, a SwampR: Baker* for 6 FoodY: Grocer for a Brick, a Grain, a LeatherR: Fisherman for a Sheep, a Fish Trap, 3 FoodY: Laborer imitates Dike Builder for a Cow, a DikeR: Carpenter for Farmer’s Inn, replacing Grain Field and Flax Field with 2 ForestsY: Builder for Litter StorageI was exhausted, so I decided to try something adventurous instead of going try hard. I saw the Smithy, and decided I’m going for the fabled plow rush strategy! Gonna need a horse on turn 3 and lots of space, so Colonist is best start. Red is doing something weird, so whatever. I gotta imitate Dike Builder to make some space. Grocer needed for the refined good.Winter 2Y: Wainwright for a Hand Cart, a Peat BoatR: Cattle Trader for 2 Grain, a Sheep, a CowY: Wood Trader for 4 WoodR: Builders’ Merchant for 2 Hides, a Clay, a BrickY: Peat Boatman for 4 PeatR: Potter for 6 Food, 2 PeatY: Fisherman for a Sheep, a Fish Trap, and 3 Food*** Yellow ships a WoodR: Master for Pottery Wheel, ShovelPrep my small vehicles. Do something to try and temporarily fix my food shortage.Summer 3R: Clay Worker for 4 ClayY: Dike Builder for a Sheep, a DikeR: Colonist for a Horse, a SwampY: Carpenter for Smithy, replacing a Hand Cart and a Peat Boat with two PlowsR: Potter* for 9 Food, 3 PeatY: Farmer for a Plow, 3 Flax FieldsR: Builder for Milk House InnY: Woodcutter for 3 WoodMore dikes! Boom, Smithy drop followed by Farmer.Winter 4*** Yellow uses Litter Storage for a HorseY: Wainwright for a Cart, a Peat BoatR: Cattle Trader for 2 Grain, a Sheep, a HorseY: Dike Builder for a Cow, a DikeR: Wood Trader for 4 WoodY: Butcher replaces 2 Cows with 8 Food, 4 HidesR: Laborer imitates Wainwright for a Cart, a Peat BoatY: Builders’ Merchant for 2 Hides, a Wood, a TinerR: Grocer for Peat Cutting, a Horse, a Wood, a Clay*** Yellow ships a Wood*** Yellow ships Aurich (a Leather = 4 Food)*** Red ships 3 WoodOn to strategy number two, Operation Horse Flood! Gonna need lots of lumber and horses. Will grab another peat boat while I’m at it. I misplaced my previous one. Red is doing some junk nobody cares about. I notice my board is getting a little too full and I need more room for horses. Time to butcher some cows! Also sorts out my food problems.Summer 5R: Clay Worker for 4 ClayY: Dike Builder for a Cow, a DikeR: Builders’ Merchant* for 2 Hides, a Wood, a BrickY: Colonist for a Horse, a SwampR: Fisherman for a Sheep, Fish Traps, 4 FoodY: Woodcutter for 3 WoodR: Laborer imitates Colonist for a Horse, a Swamp*** Red ships a Clay*** Red ships Esens (a Hide + 2 Grain = 6 Food)Y: Carpenter for a Joinery (3 Horses, 2 Peat)*** Yellow ships 3 WoodI take my thirteenth single dike push this game. Get more horses, including through the Joinery! Great value there.Winter 6Y: Tanner for 3 Leather*** Red ships Aurich (a Sheep + a Horse = 9 Food)R: Wood Trader builds Lutetsburg Castle*** Yellow ships Norden (a Sheep = 4 Food)*** Yellow ships Hage (a Wheat Field = 1 Food)*** Yellow uses Litter Storage for 3 HorsesY: Laborer for Saddlery (10 Peat Cutting)R: Builders’ Merchant for 2 Hides, a Clay, a BrickY: Woodcutter* for 3 WoodR: Potter for 12 Food, 4 Peat*** Red sh[...]

Session: Too Many Bones:: Day 4 vs. Mulmesh with Patches, Boomer, Picket and Tink

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 12:56:37 +0000

by rsansom Day 4 - Something about this stinksFor my encounter choice I opted for the ranged Baddies to get an additional Atk die, but Gearlocs get to set defence (Picket style) before the battle, however, only Boomer & Picket benefitted from this.Took time to consider the setup for Gearlocs this round as with some poorer initiative rolls the Griffin is going to be airborne before I get to react, expect some casualties this battle, hopefully not all of them as the 2 training points and loot reward would be so helpful. I’m already looking ahead to unlocking remaining party Trove Loot too to set me up for Day 5, getting ahead of myself.Round 1Dragon Delinquent acts first with an additional Atk die targeting weakest and I opt to send this to Boomer who has 2 Def Active as a result of the encounter setup. Positional setup is also important as the Dragon has Engulf which means damage spills to adjacent targets, separating the Gearlocs on initial deployment prevents collateral damage, at least for this turn.Boomers 2 Def absorbs the damage and the Dragon doesn’t pick up any Def itself but Boomer is hit with Weaken 2 for her first turn as a result of the Dragon's bone rolls.Griffin Howler signals in a 1pt Dragon Hatchling (revealed via previous scouting activity) so that’s waiting off mat and then moves to attack between Picket & Patches. 3dmg to Patches.Boomer is up next and elects to smoke grenade herself with a 1 result. Hopefully this will nullify the Dragon attack next round as it will attack but miss.Next the Dire Wolf lays into Picket for 3 dmgTink deploys Spiderbot 3.0 with Airhorn and Alternator then moves it to intercept the Dragon Delinquent and Dire Wolf Tink uses Airhorn to attack the DireWolf disabling Lashback and deals 2 DmgAs Lashback is disabled, Picket wades in to the DireWolf rolling 2Atk + Riposte dealing 2 damage and getting a useful Riposte result which will protect him from the next attack.Patches self heals for 1HP rolls MedKit + 2Atk dice but will take 1 damage from Lashback from attacking the Dire Wolf Pup. Gets a Bone, 1Dmg and 3 Heal which he consumes himself to go back to full HP.Direwolf Pup attacks and missesRound 2Dragon Delinquent attacks weakest target and again I elect to choose Boomer who is protected from this attack by Smoke (gets exhausted). However, the Engulf of the Dragon does affect the flying Griffin Howler. The Griffin is untargettable, but that doesn’t apply as the Griffin is not the target of the attack and this is just splash damage. Results in 3dmg to the Griffin. I'll raise this as a rule clarification query with CTG if I cannot find an answer on BGG.Griffin acts next and is now diving, towards either Tink or Boomer, I elect to place it next to Boomer and behind patches resulting in an attack on Boomer for 2 dmg.Boomer Attacks the Griffin and lobs out a Frag at the Dragon Delinquent. Griffin is killed and Frag deals 3 to the Dragon, and 1 to the adjacent Bot.Direwolf attacks Picket dealing 8 dmg but Pickets riposte means this misses!Tink Spiderbot 3 attacks Dragon for 2 dmg, also rolling Airhorn and Alternator, Tink also adds a Def die for good measure. 3 bones and a 1 battery increase. This gives Tink the chance to self destruct the bot dealing 3 dmg to both Dragon and Dire Wolf, who are destroyed. Spiderbot 3 is returned to dice tray as it’s a consumable that must be earned again.Picket could now attack but c[...]

Session: Star Wars: Rebellion:: Curse You Skywalker!

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 09:53:07 +0000

by JDKenada

My 7 year old and I had a fantastic session last night. As the Empire, I had him scrambling for most of the game. Unfortunately, I could not find his base to save my soul. Turn 9 I discover he's on Tatooine and he does a base jump. That leaves Ilum, Endor, and Rodia. Since I was heavily encroached on Tatooine I decide to fly a couple of units from Bespin to Endor. Nope, nothing there. Next turn I'll drop the Emperor into Rodia and pull fleets from Tatooine, Bothawui, and Geonosis...

Then my son decides to play Jedi Luke's mission card, Sabotage. Which at first confuses me. Why would you waste your most powerful piece on....oh crap!

Yep, he dropped him in Rodia, and while I sent Vader to oppose him I rolled all blanks and didn't have the mission assigned to remove Sabotage tokens that turn!

Rough lesson learned on my part....but I gave him credit for an absolutely brilliant play that I honestly never saw coming.

Session: Too Many Bones:: What is your most epic battle so far?

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 09:51:47 +0000

by Rookswj

Just finished my most epic battle to date and it was Boomer solo vs Drellen encounter and it was a nail biter. Ok technically everyone died, but Boomer still defeated Drellen and completed the main objective. How is this possible? Read on.
Setup - Solo allows you to skip BQ and just use 2 1-point Bog creatures with Drellen. I pulled a Clay Golem (yikes!) and a Bog Pole (ugh Poison counter).
Boomer - My choices all worked perfectly to defeat Drellen. I had 7 health, 4 dex, 2 attack, and 2 defense. Also had 2 bomb on the counter, with components for a third with frag grenades, smokescreen and flashbang.
Turning Point - Round 2 the Golem moved next to the Bog Pole who only had one health left. I rolled 2 attack dice, flashbang, and frag at the Golem. Flashbang got rid of break to save my dice from exhausting. I rolled 3 frag, and 2 attack damage to deal 5 damage to Golem, and 1 to Bog Pole. Both died in a shrapnel frenzy!
Drellen - When I rolled smokescreen of 2 the first round it saved me from 2 Drellen attacks. I ran like the hero I was in round 3 to avoid another. By the time he hit me with 2 Poison and attacks in Round 5 I was left with 3 health. The poison took away 2 of those leaving me with a poison counter, and bloodletting staring me in the face next round. With the bag empty of skill dice Boomer flailed at him with 2 attack and 2 defense. I did 3 attack damage, and one bone that I applied to Throw Odds for 4 damage leaving him with one health!!!! As the bloodletting hit Drellen succumbed to his last health dying in the boggy swamps of Shalefist. As her last health vanished Boomer collapsed with her final thought being that she completed her mission and will be hailed as a hero!

Tell me your most epic battle so far......

Session: ASL Journal #2:: J32 Panzer Graveyard

Sat, 22 Apr 2017 02:04:08 +0000

by Rindis After finishing up Lagus Assault Guns, Tom suggested trying out J32 "Panzer Graveyard" from Journal 2, and we got going at the beginning of March. A January '44 scenario in Italy, it has a worn-out German force with a lot of tanks assaulting a stiff British defense in the board 46 town. The Germans attack with twelve squads (ranging from first line to conscripts), a few MGs and four Pz IV Hs with a 9-1 AL and four Pz III Ns. The British are defending with ten first-line squads, a HMG and a MMG, two PIATs (who are assigned to 1-2-7 crews), a 6 pdr AT gun, a Churchill IV and a Sherman III, and some concealment markers. There's a small cluster of buildings added across the street from the main town that serves as a possible jumping-off point for the Germans.This ordinarily should be a 1/2 map scenario. But instead, it uses all of board 46 and 18 (including an overlay with another level 2 hill). This is for the use of the Pz IIIs, which set up on the various hills, ready to shell the defenders, or smoke them in. The Germans have six turns and need to control 20 buildings (out of 30) in the British setup area at the end of the game. While they have lots of armor support, they have problems; all German MMC are Lax, and their ELR is only 2. Finally, there is a +1 LV on the final turn.I took the British defense, and spent some time trying to figure out what I wanted to do. There's three main ways for the Germans to approach this, the main obvious one is the center area, jumping off from the built up area. I figured an approach from the east had a lot of open ground to go through before reaching the first buildings, and then tended to hit the least-dense parts of the town, with the graveyard, woods, and orchards, though all of that was harder to defend. Meanwhile, the west side had some open ground as well, including an extra small hill, but with some cover just on the other side of the road that forms the setup areas. I put some light forces (including a Dummy in 46W7) to slow down an east-side assault slightly, while defending the west more heavily with the HMG in EE4 and a PIAT in the brush in DD2. Another HS was in the brush in EE1, which was as far forward as I dared to go there (and there was no concealment terrain forward of there anyway). LMGs were in Y5 and W5 to provide Fire Lanes against advances in the center area, with the HMG centrally located in BB5. I had a hard time figuring out where to put the tanks and ATG, since anywhere exposed could lead to them getting easily swarmed, with eight German tanks out there (though the Pz IIIs would struggle to kill either of mine even with a rear shot with a Final TK of 3; 5 with HEAT on a 9 or less), and a good number of PFs available. The Churchill anchored the main line of defense in the northeast in Z7, with help from a PIAT in Z9 (with a crucial error that I'll get to later), and a 7-0 Z6 to act as a preliminary rally point. The Sherman was in CC7 to cover the central street, and possibly anchor the defense once the first line of buildings had fallen. The ATG went in GG7 facing SE, in case armor tried to go around the west flank and cut off my defenders (and I had problems finding anyplace that could see terrain I wanted to cover).Tom's setup surprised me, with the bulk of his forces in the center, but largely a hex back, and out of sig[...]

Session: Shadowrift:: It will be a cold winter

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 23:51:45 +0000

by tuner 13 Hi from Germany,here is my first session report of a Shadowrift game.I hope I didn't make too many mistakes during game play.Situation:New Haven is under attack by the Glacien.The defenders include- Ewa, the warrior (level 1), famous sword fighter. Her magic weapon: The Flaming Heart.- The Knights of Altam; stubborn fighters of monsters.Round 1Monster Power: 2Shadowrift in place!An army of Tundra Giants would become the first wave of attackers.A recce of knights found prince Guthbert and his small contingent of fighters in the vicinity of New Haven."We better seal the Shadowrift."1 Might to the knights.Ewa acquired the Prophecy spell.The merchants, devoted fans of the warrior, supported her with some gold.Round 2A gang of robbers came to town.MP: 5"The giants are apparently not ready yet."Ewa acquired a Seal spell."A bard might join our ranks."The knights prepared for their first battle: 2 Mights.Round 3"Vagrants in town!"MP: 8The Tundra Giants started their attack.MP: 2"It's going to be really cold."The warrior attacked.Ewa learned the Fireball spell."Gravediggers near town."The knights trained for the Leading Strike tactics."Chaaarge!"A third of the giants' army was destroyed.Round 4As the giants arrived at the gates of New Haven there were no walls to destroy. The monsters kept moving forward.MP: 5Cold Snap!MP: 1"Icelings! Countless ones!""But they are weak as china."Ewa stepped forward bravely and dissolved the cold snap."This brought Freeze to New Haven's streets."Masters-of-Arms close by.Ewa increased her fighting stamina.More gold for the warrior by the merchants admiring the gorgeous girl.The knights dug deep into black magic: Resurrect spell.Then they attacked the giants.A third of their army was gone.Round 5The giants crushed into town, the defenders had to fight yard for yard, inch for inch.MP: 4A first wave of Icelings approached New Haven.MP: 2"Snow Maidens! They will turn our town into ice!"Ewa stepped forward again, blood of giants dropping from her Flaming Heart."Time to suffer, bastards."She cast a fireball, enhanced by the Seal and the Prophecy spells (mayor Hernandez supported the brave girl).Carnage!"Chaaaarge!"Few giants were left standing, a quarter of the Icelings shattered.The knights followed Ewa into this battle.The giants' army was nearly annihilated.Round 6Heretics infiltrated New Haven.The last giants fought their final battle. The guards at the keep died to the last man.The Icelings chased the town's children!"They'll pay for this!"Corpses littered the streets and places of town.MP: 5"Snow Maidens in range!"MP: 2"More of them!"Ewa arrived at the keep and the giants' army ceased to exist.The knights conducted a leading strike against the Icelings. Their success made it easy to convince a group of pilgrims to join the defenders.Backstabbers were convinced to avoid New Haven.Might for the knights.Round 7New Haven suffered a first snow "attack" (Freeze).The first wave of Snow Maidens failed to impress the heroes.MP: 5Second wave of Snow Maidens in place.MP: 2"Dragons!"The knights struck and destroyed the Icelings.Ewa charged into the Snow Maidens and killed nearly half of them.The fishermen, also completely devoted to the girl, provided her the option to acquire the Beautiful Harvest spell.The knights learned the Prophecy spell.Ro[...]

Session: Mare Nostrum: Empires:: Stale 5p experience: Game over in 3 turns

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 23:50:37 +0000

by Umbratus

I just fell in love with this game after two initial 4p games. Now I was happy to host a first 5p game tonight. I made players (re-)read rules so we could start right away and engulf in a epic gaming night.

My gaming buddy Christopher who backed the game in kickstarter played Hannibal (Carthage). He did this cleverly, no doubt as he invested in additional wares and the wonder that lets you pick an additional commodity during income phase. He picked trading lots of goods each time it was his choice.

Then in trading phase of turn 3 we even had to trade 5 wares. Christopher and me played our 3rd game, two other players played their 2nd and one player was completely new but made sure he understood the rules well by preparing himself.

When it came to picking wares, he picked from Christopher several times. We pointed out it may not be that good a decision as this allowed Carthage to have picks on scarce stuff. But I did not expect it made all the difference, I just thought this may be a minor thing.

Ultimately, Carthage managed to get on 11 different commodities in turn 3 already, doubling one he build the pyramids before the game really started. This was a pretty stale experience. I was very disappointed the game even allowed this scenario.

I could not blame anybody but the game. Sure, Christopher played this well and he had some luck. We should have watched out for this, absolutely. But in such a big 5p game with some rules to clarify, special abilities read to everybody, this is very far from being accessible for new players. This should not be over in 45min. Setting up the game, arranging all tiles properly, explaining rules, replying questions took actually less time than actually playing 3 turns. Absurd.

Such a lovely game with such am obvious flaw. I would not be so disappointed if I had not had so much warm feelings and love for the game in our two former plays. But this was quite a bummer to our gaming night. I was sorry for everybody, especially for the guy who read up on the rules thoroughly to keep up with us more experienced folks. I know there will be opinions that say this is the game and you should have watched out for this, but yeah, it was just one of my worst gaming experiences that I needed to share.

Session: Firefly: The Game:: Down to the wire

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 22:53:31 +0000

by JediKep Lined up a solo game for myself this evening.Basic set up. Solo rules. Goal 1 "The Good" Making Connections. Everything basic game, no variants except one character card I printed today (Chow from The Verse). My crew had Mal as Captain, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, and Chow all piled on Serenity. My first turn set the tone for the entire game. I started at Persephone, checked the supply deck and bought a knife. Good thing I did.First work action was Henpecked Badger job from Patience. I kept a low profile and took the guards out easily enough. But then I ran afoul of some backwater deputies. There were only a couple of them. I need a 7, rolled a six, but thankfully, I happened to have that knife with me which brought my roll to 7. Barely made it and lost the knife too, but Patience was happy!One solid!After I messed with Badger and killed his guards, it was time to deal with him! Simple job which set us flyin towards the space Bazzar. Ran into some technical difficulty, but Kaylee caught it in time and we kept flyin, then we saw Reavers! Good thing they weren't hungry! Once at the station, we found a job courting Regina, loaded some contraband, and hired Tracey to join the crew.Got a heavy load job from Jiangyn (Motherlode) to ship across the verse to Boros. On the way we dodged some asteroids, and skirted Alliance space as we didn't want some feds finding our 'special' cargo. Gonna have to talk to that pilot because half way to Boros, we ran out of fuel! Osiris was only two jumps away, and there we bought some compression coils which helped us mosey twice as far as before.FINALLY made it to Boros and now Duul is happy. A mosey to Regina for some courtin, and we suddenly had us an interesting day. Jayne wanted to take over the ship (again) but we were barely able to take him down and make him mind. With Jayne taking a 'nap' we finished the job and collected the coin from Regina. Thanks to some sweet talkin' we managed to gain $1000 extra!Badger has some issue with how Niska was talking down to him, and Badger hired us to balance the books. But, we walked into an ambush. Good thing we outnumbered them. Once past the goons, we had to rig a bypass to kill the alarm. Made it look easy! But we got pinched trying to cover our tracks. I'm sorry to say that Tracy didn't survive. Badger was happy, but it came with a price.Then we had to look for work with Niska. Funny how everyone we are meddlin with, immediately becomes our bread and butter afterwards. It's like a pattern! Niska had no kind words for "Her Majesty, the Mayor of Whitefall". Didn't much like doing immoral work, but I needed the job and it was the least wrong of the three offered. Botched the job twice but third time things began to work in our favor. Sweet talked our way through one, Ran into someone with an old vendetta against Jayne. We did the noble thing and ran. Everyone was upset at that, but I needed Jayne alive and it wasn't worth the risk. Finally the last event brought us some "thrillin heroics" and good thing too since those actions helped the moral crew improve their attitude and be less 'gruntled.'But then they all remembered the immoral job we was doin and got disgruntled again! Close shave! I almost lost all my crew! Talk about getting ri[...]

Session: Easy Street (fan expansion for T.I.M.E Stories):: Easy Street - Fun and Chuckles in the 50's

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 22:52:59 +0000

by bobpony Easy Street - 1952 N.T.Family Friendly - Yes, with small exceptions. I’d guess this is more for families with early teens. The theme will appeal to younger kids, but you’ll have to explain or hand wave away some of the items:[o]There’s a suicide note, and marijuana, and a gun…[/o]Puzzles - No. No puzzles. It’s about exploration and fighting/persuading testsLength - Short. Which is fine. You start with 30 TU, and it took us one and two-thirds runs to finish. Much shorter than something like Asylum.Fun? Yes, definitely! I’d printed out Easy Street a couple of weeks ago and talked a buddy into playing it this afternoon. He hadn’t played TIME Stories before, but he’s a big gamer.In short, he liked the scenario, we had a good time, but he found the general ‘groundhog day’ mechanic of resetting everything at the end of a run disappointing. He said “You mean we have to do all that again?”. Yep. We do. I think that’s a weakness in the game. At the end, while we were packing the game up, the discussion was mostly around how to change the game to avoid those complete resets.But we talked about the scenario too.There are some clever things done here with resources. And the memory component, while not huge, will have you scratching your head trying to remember where you saw item 16, or how you found those four resources over there. It’s definitely possible to play without taking notes. And it’s kind of fun to play a scenario that doesn’t require copious note taking. Here are some of the things we noted during the play through:[o]* The majority of the fights were vanilla blank shields. You’re not going to see many skull shields or TU shields. A few more of those might have made things more interesting, as it was the scenario felt on the easy side.* We were surprised that there’s no score difference between achieving the green vs gold Mission Successful cards. The scores seem to be exactly the same. Aren’t we ‘excellent’ agents if we’re gold? * There’s a typo on Lovers Lane-F. The word ‘life’ should be ‘lift’.* Was the butterfly net used for anything?* What’s the explanation for the giant TV/mirror in Sally’s room? Is it from the future? They didn’t have televisions that size in the 50’s. Or what about the ladder marks on a one-story window? Or the missing sheets from Sally’s bed? Sally has a lot of backstory missing. * Likewise, why was Timmy’s bug collection thrown away? * Why is the refrigerator warm and empty? I feel like we missed some key backstory… * On Frontyard-D we forgot that *we* were the Jones’s. So when my buddy read the card he assumed that it was the entrance to the neighbor’s house. It might be better to describe it as the entrance to *your* house. Just for those of us that are a bit slow. * We weren’t sure who wrote the suicide note. Did we miss something?* The gun doesn’t specifically say that it’s only for Fitness tests, it only says it’s for ‘combat’. But we guessed that it meant ‘Fitness’. It would be good to have the Fitness logo on that card if that’s the intent (like the Baseball Bat does).* The character bio’s were terrific! Very f[...]

Session: Clash of Giants:: A “Tannenberg 1914” After Action Report and Review

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 21:02:32 +0000

by TCLCATSPAW8MCHS A “Tannenberg 1914” After Action Report (A TML March 2017 Solo-Game)Clash of Giants I: The Campaigns of Tannenberg and the Marne, 1914 [2001; GMT Games; Ted Raicer]Notes: Maximum # of Replacements utilized as appropriate each Turn by both sides but not tracked in this AAR. 1SL = 1 Step Loss. Standard set up used (Rule 3.1, page 2 of Living Rules Battle Book, 12/25/01). See Links for End of Turn Digital Photos, beginning with Turn 3.Turn 1 (August 15-16):Russian 1st Army advances towards German border. Russian 2nd Army holds current positions [by rule]. German units advance towards border areas. I Cavalry Corps units press forward in the north to provide screen.Turn 2 (August 17-18):Russian 1st Army and Russian 2nd Army advance towards German border. 1st Army units reach the border area in the vicinity of Stallnponen [4705]. Russian IV Corps forces retreat of German 2nd Cavalry Brigade and capture Stallnponen. Russian 2nd Army units reach German border south of Soldan [2624]. German units advance towards border areas. I Cavalry Corps units in the north continue screening.Turn 3 (August 19-20):Russian 1st Army and Russian 2nd Army advance towards German border; 2nd Army reaches border east of Lyck [4516]. German units continue advance towards border areas, and further consolidate strong blocking positions in key areas. I Cavalry Corps units in the north continue screening.T3: Turn 4* (August 21-22):Russian Armies continue to advance. 2nd Army advances west of Lyck [4516] and engage the Germans at several points. Battle for Neidenburg (2822). German 41st Division of XX Corps defending & Russian 1 / 2 Corps, 22nd & 24th Divisions, plus 2nd Division from XXIII Corps of 2nd Army attacking: Germans no losses; Russian 24th Division takes a 1SL. The VI Corps of the Russian 2nd Army attacks German Fort at Johannisburg (4019): no losses to the fort, but Russian 16th Division takes 1SL. Russian 1st Army IV Corps units attack and capture Goldap (4410). The defending German 1R Corps Divisions [1R & 36th R] both take 1SLs and retreat. Russian 5th Rifle Brigade eliminated, and IV Corps 30th and 40th Divisions take 1SLs. Battle for Gumbiden (4006). German I Corps defending & Russians attack with III Corps (25th and 27th Divisions) and 57th Division of the 1st Army: No German losses; Russian 27th and 5th Divisions both take 1 SLs.German units continue to advance to block Russian units, and engage Russian forces at several points. I Cavalry Corps screens effectively in the north. German Cavalry units retreat from any and all potential Russian attacks, and then advance to retake as much territory as is prudent. German I Corps assumes “attack state” (by rule), and attacks [2x1] Russian 1st Army 53rd Division [4605]: the Russian unit takes a 1SL and retreats (4); the German I Corps advances. German 3rd R Division and 37th Division attack [4x1] Russian XXIII Corps 2nd Division [2823], which already had a 1SL, and suffers a second loss which eliminates the unit.T4: Turn 5 (August 23):Russian units continue to advance s[...]

Session: Mythic Battles: Pantheon:: Mythic Battles: Pantheon - PnP - Scenario 3 - The Struggle for the Underworld - Ending of first solo play

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 18:28:53 +0000

by Uthin Hi,I have just finished a solo left-hand-vs-right-hand game using the PnP files and a virtual tabletop software called MapTool. The ending was very exciting (I went so far as to call it "EPIC!" right after ) with the decision hanging on the last draw of cards in the last round of the timer.What follows is an account of the final three rounds with Hades having first turn.----------------After having been caught up for far too long in the area with the southern pillar due to Cerberus being present with its Block talent and him being protected by continually respawning Hell Warriors, Ares together with Leonidas and the spartans finally managed to kill first the last of the Hell Warriors and then Cerberus. Ares’ Wrath power (he struck last) then kicked in, gave Hades a scratch and removed the final Vitality point of the pillar.But Ares was by now grievely wounded and after an attack by Achilles with no spartans guard him and Leonidas having beend mightily thrown into the swampy Styx, he was down to 2 Vitality!Moving for Ares was now only possible by "running". And he was two areas away from the final pillar.And there was only 3 turns left before Hades’ reinforcements would arrive, sealing Ares’ doom.Turn T-3:Hades only has 3 cards. Hell Hounds (all dead), Hell Warriors (all dead), Cerberus (also dead. He draws another Hell Hound. Hades must pass!Ares has more cards. One spartans (all dead), one hoplite (all dead), one Atalanta (also dead), one Ares card, and one AoW card that he just got from demolishing the southern pillar.Ares drew another spartan. Useless. He activated himself and “ran” into the area of Charon’s boat from where he could reach the eastern pillar’s area when next he moved. Then he spent the only AoW card he had left on hand to recall the spartans for protection.Turn T-2:Hades then drew another Hell Warriors. He must pass again! (Which incidentally meant that Ares had wasted his AoW card...)Ares drew Atalanta. He now had two of those! He spent them as an AoW card and “ran” into the area with the eastern pillar! If he would get really lucky and draw either the last Ares activation card or an AoW card, he might get lucky and smash the pillar in the last round with his remaining 6-dice attack… Turn T-1:Hades then drew another Cerberus card. And now he has two and can spend them as an AoW card… (And from here on I begin writing in “real-time”, as the game evolves and my thoughts occur as I play the last bit...)(Hades has almost certainly won. Plan: spend the two Cerberus cards to find a Hades activation card, step over and kill Ares.) With malignant triumph written all over his face, the lank and greasy hair in tatters around his brow and sharp cheeks, Hades calmly makes to cross the distance to the area with the eastern pillar to finish off his divine adversary.But a big hulking shape places itself in harms - and Hades' - way. The Minotaur sets its feet for optimum balance, lowers its horns and lets Hades know in no uncertain terms (and with quite a bit of noise) that he will not suffer Hades to leave the area. (I almost forgot the Minotaur and its Block talent was in the same area as Had[...]

Session: CO-OP: the co-op game:: Live Life to the Fullest!

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 18:23:00 +0000

by saunders

I just played a particularly gratifying "Live Life to the Fullest!" scenario.

The set-up:
A three-player game (with advanced Weldon, normal Sunshine, and Bizzie Hugh) on normal (3 goods in the warehouse, 3 goods in the storefront).

I won on the LAST say on the last card. Money started the last day at $3 (1$ off!). Weldon is at OK, Sunshine is Groovy, Hugh is Awesome.

Hugh played "Laughter is Contagious" which allows one player to gain a VIBE when another player goes to Awesome. Sunshine FROLICs and brings Weldon to Groovy, and then herself to Awesome---this triggers the laughter is contagious, and Weldon goes to Awesome as well.

As the last card, Weldon plays a slacker who buys one GOOD for $1, and we win!


Sunshine does FROLIC a lot. I have many heard people tell me that. Some say "that's so cool!" and some say "that's overpowered". But that's her purpose: to keep the store VIBE-alicious. Sunshine reminds me of the Medic in Pandemic: they each have one main purpose (to HEAL) and they do it well. I WOULD NOT have won this last game without Sunshine. Even with her, it was a squeaker of a game. I don't think she's overpowered, but she does FROLIC a lot. (image)

This game and my last game remind me why you want a BIZZIE and a HIPPIE. In this game, we needed the HIPPIES to go from Bogus to Awesome: without Sunshine, we NEVER would have made it to Awesome. On the other hand, we needed the BIZZIES to help us sell goods (and get better deals from DISTRIBUTORS). That one extra good from the DISTRIBUTOR can mean the difference between too many and too few goods in the storefront.

All throughout the game, I had to decide when to SHARE, when to MEDITATE, when to COOPERATE (3 times to get all COOPERATE actions!), and then occasionally, to WORK! MONDOMART TAKEOVER is great for the starting game, but once you get into the game, the puzzle of trying to figure out how to get EVERYONE to experience all parts of life is just so gratifying! Both on a puzzly level, and on a metaphysical level (everybody participated in all the different things).

Just had a real fun time.

(Oh, and for the record, I lost a Kidnapped! scenario yesterday. I just couldn't get enough customers. Sometimes, you just lose no matter how much or how well you've played. I didn't need to tear up any cards though, as luckily they found Weldon behind the Warehouse after they couldn't pay the Ransom...)

Session: Cthulhu Wars:: 4-player base game, Yellow Sign victory!

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 18:22:08 +0000

by jadester48

Saturday 8th April
The 4 players were:
Myself (Jon), Jase, Alex and Rob. It was Rob's first play of Cthulhu Wars, and the second for the rest of us.
Once again, we randomly assigned the factions – I got Black
Goat (red minis), Jase got Crawling Chaos (blue minis), Alex got Great Cthulhu (green minis) and Rob got Yellow Sign (yellow minis)
It took us a couple of rounds to get going. I made a near-fatal mistake in turtling too much too soon,which resulted in me only occupying (the same) 2 regions (with gates) for the entire game. This severely limited my supply of power and, in turn, my ability to earn Doom points. I was amazed that I still managed to earn all 6 of my faction's spell books, although of course I lagged way behind in Doom points so was never in contention for winning. Only Great Cthulhu didn't manage this (getting all 6 of their spellbooks).
Great Cthulhu and Crawling Chaos did engage in some combat against each other, mainly around the Pacific and Atlantic (both in ocean and land regions), but they tended to leave the Yellow Sign faction alone, and i wasn't in a position to attempt much damage against them, so they managed to rampage across much of the Northern regions unchecked, leaving a trail of desecrations. It helped their cause that Rob didn't fail a single desecration die roll.
I attempted to break out from my measly 2 territories several times, but was frustrated by some bad dice rolls and didn't really commit enough units to any of these attempts.
Yellow Sign also made the most of their spell book abilities.
The game lasted about 1.5-2 hours, with Yellow Sign wining by a comfortable margin, having earned the most Elder Sign tokens out of all of us, as well as visible Doom points.
All in all it was an enjoyable game, and next time I have to remind myself that when engaging in combat, it's usually only a roll of 6 that means death to a unit.

Session: Too Many Bones:: My first ever game report - Solo Patches vs Nom on Seasoned difficulty

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 16:41:11 +0000

by RoloCookie I promised Josh not long ago that I was planning to write him a glowing review of TMB. Today was the day I set aside to do that. Unfortunately, I got sidetracked, and here's a game report instead! Sorry guys, I'll get round to it!Please know that this is the first ever game report I've written for anything, so it might be a little rough around the edges!After playing a dozen or so games on Greenhorn I'm finally starting to build up some wins. I don't have a wealth of solo experience, as I mainly play with groups of 3 or 4, but after a long night of theory-crafting last night, I've picked a Tyrant-Gearloc combo I reckon I can handle on Seasoned difficulty. I've decided to battle Nom. From my dozen or so games of experience, I think he has the easiest selection of baddies, and his encounter is way easier on solo than it is for larger parties. For my Gearloc I've chosen Patches - specifically to counter Nom. I think the Poison will be invaluable against trolls, and the lack of true damage or mischief will allow me to exploit the big hp buffs in Stim Stacker!Day 1:Chose 2 skills - toxins and stim kitBattling Nom, I knew I'd be fighting trolls, Toxins will be invaluable for penetrating their thick skin! I don't expect to take much true damage, so I decided to progress down the Stim Stacker profession. My game plan is to rush to the chain reactor so I can double up on regen and maybe even Stim Lethal for some permanent HP buffs!Scouted a 1pt Troll Brute and decided to leave it there, Toxins should deal with it nice and easily. I sure hope I don't encounter a second Troll on day 2 though. Not sure how I'll get through 2 thick skin baddies when I only have an attack stat of 1.Day 2:Go big or go home. I decided to reject the guard's help. If I'm going to beat Seasoned, I'm gonna need the extra training point. The troll brute I knew about, and he brought an Orc scout with him. Easy! I can do this! Disaster strikes halfway through the fight! I manage to roll a tainted mixture on my Stim Kit! I'm only on 1 hp and the Orc attacks and rolls...Bones!At this point the troll dies from poison and my 1 attack, defence, and regen are more than the single Orc can handle. Success!A fortunate discovery! I decide to take the poison dart! Odds are I'll need it for my next battle, and trolls hate poison! Not sure if progressing without upgrading my stats is wise (I'm woefully short on dexterity), but I decide to stick to the plan and rush chain reactor. Assuming I can avoid more tainted mixtures, I should be pretty hard to kill now.No choice but to rest tonight. But I'll be able to get in some more scouting tomorrow. Day 3:I decide to tuck in my ears and walk like a commoner. I'm sad to turn down the trove loot, but on solo this is more likely than ever to succeed without penalty, and that extra training point and progress are beckoning me!I roll a 4. Phew! Going against all my better judgement I decide against dexterity again, and pick up the Stim Lethal. If Lady Luck smiles on me I'll pick up some permanent HP boosts in my future battles. Even if it means I'm doo[...]

Session: Too Many Bones:: Day 1 to 3 vs. Mulmesh with Patches, Boomer, Picket and Tink

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 16:41:05 +0000

by rsansom Setup & Tyrant: I've opted to go up against Mulmesh and this will be my first attempt at him, either solo or multiplayer. Having previously taken on Nom (solo) and Drellen (multi) with mixed success at least the cross over in creature types gives me some advance warning of the types of special abilities I’ll be up against.I’ve also chosen to play Casual rather than Greenhorn, gaining the extra training and health point but ultimately experiencing the full pain of being KO’d when that inevitably happens.Character selection: Patches, Boomer, Picket, Tink. Picket being the only character I've played before this is also a voyage of discovery from a party mix perspective and I want to get to grips with Tink.Initial Skills from the bonus training point:Patches : Med KitBoomer : Frag Picket : RiposteTink : AirHornDay 1: Took the option for two training points and added the following SkillsPatches : Nutrients + 1 AtkBoomer : Body Search + 1 AtkPicket : Rush + 1 DexTink : Firing Arm, ProdderDuring Recovery phase we scouted the following baddies Griffin Howler(5), Stone Golem(5), Bog Lurk(5), Dragon Whelp(1). We cycled all the 5Pt baddies to the back of the stack.Day 2: I've usually opted not to take the help from the soldiers but given previous experiences decided, in the hope this session report has a happy ending, to focus on completing the encounter rather than taking an early beating.8Pts of Baddies are required (Day 2 x 4 Gearlocs) and we know the first 1Pt Baddie from previous day scoutingTink's 1.0 Build die (rolled before battle) gives the option of adding Air Horn this battle to his Bot if deployed.Picket's start of battle shield wall provides 2 x 1DefRound 1I opted for this layout thinking Picket can take on the Dragon Whelp and try and remove it from the game early on giving more room for manuever in subsequent rounds. Success would also remove a high initiative enemy from the mat. At the beginning of the round the Soldiers deal 1 dmg to all baddies.Picket's initial roll(after expending 1 Dex to move into contact) is about as good as it can get with a 2dmg and riposte result, the dmg taking out the Dragon Whelp before it can attack with the Riposte providing useful damage avoidance in future rounds maybe and Picket still has his Shield Wall in place, this is a promising start.Patches does 2dmg against the Bog Frog which is now down to 1 following the initial soldier attackTink deploys his bot right in front of him having increased the battery before deployment. Then the bot deals 1 dmg to the Bog Pole and disables its poison attack with its Air Horn disable effect.Next up is the Manticore 5Pt Baddie who will range attack the two weakest opponents (Tink, Bot, Boomer). As Boomer is last to act this round and I want grenades I opt to take the attacks to Tink and his Bot. The Manticore is not at full HP following the soldier attack so in addition to the Poison 2 will roll 2 Atk dice due to its Rage 2 Skill. Maybe a better option would have been to use the Bot on the Manticore and Disable its skills wi[...]

Session: Firefly: The Game – Crime & Punishment:: First Crime and Punishment, a la GWEK

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 16:40:42 +0000

by chas59 FIRST CRIME AND PUNISHMENT A LA GWEKBy ChasYesterday I had the opportunity to try my first game with the Firefly Crime and Punishment expansion, and we also threw in two GWEK customs ships: Aces and Eights and White Lightening with their Captains, Drive Cores, and Ship Upgrades, with the other cards shuffled into the Supply Planet decks for usual consideration during Buys. In the event, none of the deck cards came into play. My pal enjoyed checking out the custom ships, since he's a daring adventurer who always plays with Artful Dodger rather than a standard Firefly. He chose WL; I got A&E. So I could extend my Range by two by burning an extra Fuel, but my opponent could Mosey two spaces. We used the Smuggler's Blues Story Card and the Clear Skies, Better Days Set Up card from the new CAP expansion. I changed the set up for SB just a bit. Instead of placing 3 Contrabands in each planetary sector in Alliance Space or 2 each on the two Rim expansion areas, I wanted to have the entire playmat board in the game, so I put one Contra on each planetary sector on the entire board, but not on Supply or Contact Planets, (not on Asteroid only spaces or Cortex Relays either, and only one on sectors with multiple planets). Also not on Londinium-- since the Alliance Cruiser and both player start there, it would seem to be pointless. We both grabbed up loose Contraband at start, only then realizing that we couldn't sell it until we'd completed jobs for the contacts--we hadn't played in a while. With only two players, we went to Deal with different Contacts the whole game, since we started out with the Alliance Alert that prevents a second player from dealing with a Contact for which someone has completed a job! Although you get no starting jobs, all Smuggling jobs now became easy with all that Contraband around. Its an odd wrinkle in the rules, but since Contra is Contra, it meant we could skip pick ups of Contra at planets specified and just use what was all around us, and then deliver it.As expected, the faster travel ignoring a die roll's worth of sectors where we did not have to take a Nav card (Clear Skies) made up for some of the more difficult new Misbehave Cards. Although the game took about 3 hours; a bit longer time than anticipated, it was a fun play. Each of us was only caught once by the Alliance Cruiser, losing Contraband, but since so much was available to us all over, it was easily replaced. In my case, I got honked just when I was about to leave the Rim (I realized only a day later that I'd had a Cry Baby but forgot to use it). This meant that the Alliance Alert card changed twice, but none affected the game. In the case of the final alert card, I had just hired a Wanted crew before the card came into effect that prevented my enemy from hiring another one there. This was very lucky for him, as he was then headed for the same planet I was leaving (Persephone). In this case the Alert card had not been placed on the planet, since it had come into the game after my purchase![...]

Session: Comanchería: The Rise and Fall of the Comanche Empire:: Surprising result

Fri, 21 Apr 2017 14:38:38 +0000

by Leovigild

I recently finished a play of Scenario 9.3, Rise of Empire, that ended in a victory. It was a very deep and satisfying play, and all through several plays I've been struck by how enjoyable Comanchería is. It has made me rethink what is possible in a solitaire game.

At the end of the game, out of curiosity I decided to look at the starting position for scenario 9.5, Downfall, as it begins right where scenario 9.3 leaves off. Given this is an unfamiliar historical period for me, I had no prior expectations of how the game would develop, as I would for say a Gettysburg or Market-Garden game. So I wondered how far off the historical path I ended up. Here are the results:

Ending position: 3
1800 setup: 3
[I lost a ranchería right near the end, on the Manuel del Portillo card]

Total band strength:
Ending position: 10
1800 setup: 12

Combined medicine rating:
Ending position: 19
1800 setup: 12
[I had Cuerno Verde who retired in the last Passage of time, which boosted my final status]

Culture cards:
Ending position: 13 points of cards
1800 setup: 12 points of cards

Culture points:
Ending position: 5
1800 setup: 3

Military points:
Ending position: 3
1800 setup: 3

Tribes on the map:
Ending Position: 7
1800 setup: 7

West settlements:
Ending position: 0
1800 setup: 1
[West got hammered repeatedly in my game]

South settlements:
Ending position: 3
1800 setup: 3

Bison counters:
Ending position: 9
1800 setup: 9

Final tally: I think it is remarkable how close I came to the 'historical' positions at the end of my play, considering how much variability there is in the cards, Enemy actions, die rolls and success draws. And it's a testament to the robustness of the game that I could play through 2 full periods without any sense of where I 'ought' to end up other than the victory conditions and still remain pretty much on the historical track.

Session: Eldritch Horror:: The student has become the master

Thu, 20 Apr 2017 09:55:31 +0000

by Constrictor

Just had the most epic solo play session (4 investigators) vs Cthulhu (all expansions owned).

It started out really well with a lot of powering up early on and success after success, even though the most difficult and annoying mystery came out first (Threatening Seas).

Luckily, I was able to advance the active mystery through expeditions and unique assets/tasks three times, so I only had to collect one eldritch token by sacrificing a spell and clue and passing a difficult lore test (and losing a sanity).

As the second mystery came out, it was somewhat late in the game (6-7 more turns remained). Doom had been dropping like a rock due to several red and several blue gates that had cropped up that I was unable to close for one reason or another (location/difficult monsters/blocked by cthulhu eldritch sea tokens, etc.).

The second mystery was an epic monster (Hydra), which was not going to be much of a problem as my redeemed cultist (Diana) had a double barrel shotgun, will boosters, and was blessed (among other things she had).

I attempted to kill the hydra in one turn but fell short by one damage. That's when doom finally hit 0 due to an attempted gate closure failing quite unluckily.

So now I'm only on the second mystery and doom has hit zero and Cthulhu has risen! The stars are right! I went to bed after that and was determined to finish the game in the morning one way or the other.

Long story shorter, the second mystery was solved on the next turn and the third mystery was Ryleh Risen, which only requires 2 passes and is on the exact same space as Cthulhu will spawn after it is cleared. In the meanwhile I had been closing all of the blue gates around the map and leaving the red gates up as they would not come due before the game was over one way or the other. I had been able to rest up a bit (everyone was at 1-2 points of sanity at one point or another) and move three of my investigators to Buenos Aires which was adjacent to the mystery space. I would need to move all three in, have two of them succeed, then pass the final mythos phase (which was going to be a reckoning, which would cause everyone to lose sanity from Cthulhu in accordance with how many sanity tokens were on his card), and then kill Cthulhu on the next turn which did not have a mythos phase card left to win.

I ended up casting shriveling on him for a critical success which reduced his health by 4 (from 7 max) and then rolling 3 sixes plus another hit with my 6 dice on him, dealing his max health to him in one hit.

Diana the redeemed cultist became a blessed shotgun wielding spellcaster of death and destruction and blew her own god's head off after nuking it with magic to save the world at the last moment. Epic!

Session: Innsmouth Escape:: Session Report: Playtest of Solo rules

Thu, 20 Apr 2017 09:51:38 +0000

by culix Had some quiet time to spare, so I decide to pull this game off the shelf and try out the solo rules published long ago. It was fun!Setup Time: 5 minutesPlay Time: 35 minutesOutcome: Human victory!So what happened?Each of the rounds below represents 3 turns of the game, alternating Deep One and Human. Stock upI started at the bottom of the map in D5 and began with some terrible combat: missing several Deep Ones and taking wounds. However I was able to quickly claim 2 equipment tokens worth 6 equipment cards! I drew: Pistol, Tattered Robes, Medicine x2, Strange Elixir, and Shoggoth Ward. Not a bad start. Stock up more, take damageI moved north on the map to F1 with the large token stack and was rewarded with an Axe, Pistol, and Map, and drew the Secret Passage encounter card. Nice! While I was celebrating 6 Deep Ones surrounded me. I made good use of my new equipment by _missing all attacks entirely_ and taking 5 wounds :-/. Ouch! Heal and rescueI drew lucky locations for the Deep Ones and nothing spawned near me. I was able to capture 2 Captive cards - and they were *both* worth Victory Points! I have 4VP. I chug both Medicine bottles and heal back to full health, just to be on the safe side.Now I have a huge set of Equipment cards and full wounds. Somehow I managed to avoid summoning any shoggoths and escaped most of the Deep Ones. Time to hunt VP.Board at the end of turn 3No monsters near me (in D1, at the top middle) and no Equipment left to grab nearby.Time to head into the fray and look for friends More damage + dud grenadeCurses! 6 Deep Ones spawn right next to me and move in. My Grenade kills a measly 2 monsters and I take 4 wounds in the battle. However, I'm able to rescue 2 VP, bringing me to 6. Sneaking everywhereTime to dance! I use Tattered Robes and Secret Passage to go where I normally couldn't. I'm able to rescue 2 more Captive tokens. One of them is a ruse - +3 Deep Ones and 0 VP, but the other is good! +2VP brings me to 8 total. Time to get the heck out of here! Rushing WestBy this time many more Deep Ones had spawned - I've used up the entire Yellow bag and most of the Green. Heading South puts me in range of 18 Deep Ones, while moving West has only 3. It's an easy choice.3 more Deep Ones spawn on my way West. I miss with my attack, drink my Strange Elixir, and miss again! I also play Whisky and watch every Deep One roll (all 1s) on the dice. Wasted items all around! I'm not terribly concerned though, because I'm out!I start my turn at the edge of town and escape, friends in hand! My first ever victory as the Human player.Pretty much the perfect draw of Captive cards: almost all worth victory pointsImpressionsOverall the solo mode was fun and fits the mechanics of the game well. Drawing random locations for the Deep Ones makes sense, even if it might be a bit too random or easy. Since monsters only close in if you are 1 square away, you can exploit keeping parts of the board clear by knowing [...]

Session: Memoir '44: The Battles of Khalkhin-Gol:: Khalkhin-Gol Campaign (Part 3) Bain Tsagan Heights (Breakthrough)

Thu, 20 Apr 2017 08:42:52 +0000

by jesters_race Basin Tsagan HeightsSo here is our first of the Breakthrough maps for the campaign. This one needs 10 medals to take victory and there are 3 areas with objective medals, so I would expect the areas to be fought over a fair bit.As always the national badges on the cavalry and vehicles are there just so I can tell which side they belong to at a glance.Both sides forces have been adjusted from last scenarios attrition roll.The Commissar has approved the Russians first card, is under the chit and we are ready to roll with the Japanese kicking offEarly GameThe Japanese push forward on their right to gain control of the Basin Tsagan Height, while also sending some units forward to attack the Russian armour. One of the Russian armour units is mauled by the fierce attack with Molotov cocktails. The Russian then Recon all along their line, though being ambushed as an armoured unit tries dealing with the advancing Japanese. The Japanese suffer some losses but not as terrible as it could have been. The Japanese keep the attack on the right going destroying an armoured unit but also sending some infantry back so as not to risk being over extended. The Russians have very little to answer with against the attack but order some infanry and cavalry forward to help in the future, the cavalry attacks a unit of tanketts and leaves them reduced. The Japanese finest hour has arrived and the tanketts respond to the cavalry attack surrounding them and destroying them. Some infantry are also reduced from the tanketts attack. On the right the Japanese deal with the other reduced armour unit, taking it out. The Russians now order their armour forward firing at range on the Japanese in front of the heights and are able to destroy an infantry unit. A Russian armoured car crosses the river to reinforce the centre and hopefully to deal with the tankett. Mid GameSome Japanese air power flies in and strafes the Russian armoured line causing some loses. The Russians now recon in all their areas reducing some Japanese infantry near the heights, forcing the retreat of a tankett unit. The Japanese then conduct operations behind enemy lines and destroy the flame tanks before returning to the heights. The Russians then open up with a firefight destroying some Japanese infantry in front of the heights and the armoured car directs some pretty ineffective fire at the tanketts. The Japanese now mount a major advance on their left, moving up all their infantry, armour and artillery. The tanks fire on the main defensive line but only inflict light casualties while the tanketts are unable to destroy the armoured car. The Russians probe in the centre destroying a tankett unit and reducing an armoured unit, while the Russian armour on their left re positions.Mid to Late GameThe Japanese now launch their own armoured assault targeting the right of the main Russian defensive line and crack the line destroying the infantry uni[...]

Session: Fading Glory:: Hasty assaults and Michel Ney shatter Napoleon's dreams...

Thu, 20 Apr 2017 08:30:05 +0000

by marktb1961

I introduced a new player (me playing as French) and I got a bit carried away with committing reserves in early assaults. My opponent generally matched me but I'd forgotten I would need to dislodge him from Quatre Bras and Ligny by the night turn or lose a morale point each one, and it didn't help that one of my cavalry corps broke at Ligny in turn 2.

In the photo, I've just dodged one bullet as my opponent decides to attack my cavalry with the Prussian I Corps infantry, which I will evade in the reaction phase. He might have tipped the balance if instead they had joined his attack on my IV corps infantry by Ligny. My hopes of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat hang on me orchestrating favourable assaults on the Prussians and getting two morale points out of it in my favour.

It doesn't happen; my event card draw seals my fate. Instead, the impetuous Michel Ney leads III cavalry corps in a premature and doomed assault on the British. My final morale point is lost as the failed cavalry rout 4 hexes back from the woods, leaving me with a lesson in managing Napoleonic 20 morale points and taking a little time to prepare assaults in future.

Session: Pirates of the Spanish Main:: Ocean's Edge was released 10 years ago today!

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 20:48:14 +0000

by a7xfanben Today is the 10th anniversary of Ocean's Edge! Due to lack of interest and some annoying no-shows, there weren't any VASSAL games played for this anniversary after all, so I had to play by myself. However, ironically enough the game turned out extremely well, despite using some of the most maligned ships ever!Using only game pieces from OE, there were 4 fleets participating at a 50 point build total. After some die rolls, the order of play was Cursed, Spanish, Americans, Pirates. Each faction brought at least one sea creature; the Pirates brought two. To further emphasize the Ocean's Edge/At World's End aspect, flat earth rules were used, though they didn't come into play (though if round earth rules were used perhaps the game would have been slightly different).Here is the setup, with 5 coins on each of the 5 wild islands. 5 whirlpools were also present.The Americans had two S speed ships and their sea serpent Champ.The Spanish had some nice diversity - a crab to cause terror, a slow but capacious gold runner, and a small but similarly capacious home island raider.The Pirates were simply out for blood. They had only two open cargo spaces, but they were on the powerful Jape. Angelica and Teach were ready to eat plenty of man flesh with their sharp teeth!The Cursed looked similar to the Americans, with two ships and a sea serpent. The Nosso Lar and Nightmare aren't two of their better ships, while Maxehebel isn't one of their best sea creatures. However, the Cursed sized up their arguably pathetic competition and knew they had a fighting chance.After a turn, it looks like the Spanish and Cursed may clash over the northern island. The Americans stick together, while the Pirates do the opposite: they've decided to split their "fleet" into three, sending the Jape after the Americans, Angelica after the Cursed, and Teach after the Spanish.The Mezquita was the first ship to explore, and found the first UT, which sent her through a whirlpool and out another one. The Santa Lucia turned east towards the same island to avoid the Cursed, but a submerged shark appeared off her larboard bow!The Mezquita lost a mast, but was actually closer to her home island than if she hadn't found the UT. El Toro has decided to not engage the Cursed, instead guarding the Spanish HI to make sure the Mezquita gets home in case of a sneak attack by the Jape.With a swoop attack Angelica savagely rips apart the Nosso Lar! In a rare opportunity to sail the ocean, the poor little Cursed ship barely gets a chance to prove her worth!The next turn started with the Nightmare finding Lost and Homing Beacon on the northern island! 4 reefs showed up underneath a whopping 5 different ships! Angelica flew away from harm, but the Jape, Mezquita, and Aaron Burr all lost a mast each, with the Oregon losing two. Suddenly the Americans weren't looking good a[...]

Session: March Madness:: The Playing of the 2017 Tournament

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 20:47:01 +0000

by sherron

I made a crude set of playing pieces to re-play the 2017 NCAA Basketball Tournament after having the motivation to do so since the school I am employed at East Tennessee State University being in the tournament. I was going to be impartial in which color I would play but ended up with ETSU in the Red faction when I made my color roll.

In the first round Jacksonville State only lost to Louisville by two points 78 to 76, Vermont upset Purdue 79 to 78, Oklahoma State upset Michigan 73 to 67, Virginia Tech squeaked by Wisconsin 72 to 70, and Seton Hall beat Arkansas 70 to 65. My (ETSU) Buccaneers lost to the Gators 90 to 88, which was not as bad as the real matchup.

In the second round the most exciting game was between Duke and South Carolina. Coach K's Blue Devil team won in the second overtime beating the Gamecocks 89 to 85.

The Elite Eight had Kansas, Louisville, Gonzaga, Maryland, Villanova, Duke, North Carolina, and Kentucky. The last round must have taken the wind out of Duke and Kentucky. Duke lost to Villanova 82 to 72 and UNC Tar Heels embarrassed the Kentucky Wildcats 76 to 60.

In the final four Kansas (my red team) won their game against North Carolina 76 to 69. Then Gonzaga won over Villanova 83 to 74. The championship went to Gonzaga in the final game when they won over Kansas 71 to 64. By that time each team only had two events chits each to play to influence the outcome. So congratulations to Gonzaga for the 2017 March Madness tournament.

Session: Band of Brothers: Screaming Eagles:: If this is Combat - Scenario 5 from Screaming Eagles (Narrative)

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 20:46:33 +0000

by TheBigE

What follows is my solo play through on Scenario 5 from the BoB: Screaming Eagles 2.0.

Looking back I made a few mistakes (as annotated below). However, I really enjoy the fluid nature of the game and the narrative element that develops over the game. As you can see I have taken my liberties on creating a bit of the story. For each Post - it will encompass a turn with both narrative and details.

This is my first session report of any type, so I welcome any feedback and input. This can be rules or otherwise. As I said, I know I missed a few rules but overall not a great impact to the outcome. So without further ado allow me to start with the setup and my initial thoughts going into the scenario


Germans are concealed and I am using solo rules for setup, so concealed markers are placed and units will be randomly drawn from cup should they be fired upon. Americans setup is pretty straight forward and reinforcements will arrive over the next 4 turns at the same hexes - on Turn 4 - 3x Infantry will arrive on the Northern Edge of Board 5.

General Thoughts going into the scenario.

Americans need to neutralize the 88mm Guns, nothing but open ground between the Infantry units and these 88s. Advancing in the face of this firepower in the open is a no win battle, but the units being concealed and in Foxholes will make this a challenge. Mortar fire will start (note this was a mistake that was identified later in game…read on).

Germans are lagely in a defensie position - for the 88s this means they need to be ready to respond to any American movements, I have them oriented as shown with covering much of the arcs of the advancing Americans. The last 88mm (Eastern most) in actually oriented to the Northwest Hex Spine just to cover any sneak runs across the Northern Edge of the board. The remaining 88s are facing the south west hex spine.

Session: Hamsterbande:: Easter Hamsters ...

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 20:46:11 +0000

by WBuchanan

Played this with my little nieces and newphew (Ages 8, 5, and 4) during our Easter gathering this weekend.

Things were going great, besides the usual kids stuff like trying to grab the pieces and die before there turn type stuff, until near the end of the game when there was only a grain and a carrot left ...

My nephew was one space from picking up the last grain, but it wasn't his turn yet. My niece rolled the die and had enough movement to get to the grain or the carrot. She informed that she wanted to go get the grain. I tried to explain that Petey was already going after the grain, and maybe she'd rather go after the carrot since we also needed that one. Well, that didn't go over well and she started to cry. I tried to explain that we were all on the same team, and we needed to get all the food for the hamsters. Then he started to cry. So now they were both crying!

I managed to solve it by putting the carrot in it's storeroom and taking out a grain back out so there were 2 grain, instead of a grain and a carrot. I never thought such a problem would arise from such a simple game! ha.

Also, a more serious problem I had with the game was that moving some of the parts was problematic. The WHEEL didn't turn very easily at all, and the kids had real problem doing it by themselves. Also the ELEVATOR would get stuck by the spot on the board where the two pieces meet when moving down.

Cute little game though.

Session: Zombicide: Black Plague:: How my wife got introduced to ZBP and probably won't be playing for a while...

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 13:05:20 +0000

by SaphuA

My wife and I love gaming, but ZBP is a little on the heavy side for her. Which is why I was so happy when she finally wanted to give it a try. We picked out an easy quest and I even gave her the better characters and starting weapons. This was going to be great!

Everything went okay right up to the point, somewhere around turn 6 or 7, one of our adventurers entered the yellow zone and 3 of our champs ended that round on a spawn point. They were clumsily trying to open a door or being otherwise occupied (let's just say that my wife wasted more turns rearranging her inventory than I would like to admit...). Besides what would come out of that single spawn point, only a single runner would be able to reach us, so what could go wrong? Cue the zombie phase...

(By the way, did I mention we had already lost Ann due to the fact that she "looks kickass and does not play well with others, so she will venture alone". It did not end well.)

First flip, the spot where our heroes had gathered, the runner was already in place and we were laughing about how easy it would be to destroy him. Two regular walkers joined him. We laughed even harder!

The flipping continued. A lonesome fatty we would easily deal with later on. That is, "if aunt Sandra would even be able to reach us with her fat ass". Followed by a double spawn for the last spawn point. No biggie, right?

The last spawn point. First flip; two runners. I reassured my wife one of our ranged weapons would probably take them out before they would be able to reach us. She commented something about how heroic and handsome I am, I think. Second flip; a double spawn... shit!

Back to where our golly bunch was huddled up and two more flips to go.

First flip; two runners. We're okay, I assured my wife.
Second flip; a necromancer. We'll manage, but shit!
I calmly explained to my wife this is why she shouldn't have equipped Silas with just a torch and a worthless enchantment.
Third flip; an abomination. Shit! Shit! Shit!

It took a while to explain to my wife that, even if we killed the two walkers, we wouldn't be able to kill the 3 runners or the necromancer, because the abomination has targetting priority. And that also we couldn't run away, because we did not have enough actions.

We decided that the game was lost.

I probably won't mention it for a while...

Session: Tiny Epic Galaxies: Beyond the Black:: vs Everyone:

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 06:59:41 +0000

by KingJackalope This is me playing each opponent until I achieved a win. Total record at end was: 15-5-1My gameplay usually favors heavy Energy hoarding and re-rolls. Once in awhile I get a Culture engine going but it is rare honestly I prefer the re-rolls. 4/5/2017 - vs Artemis (beginner) 21-11 W4/5/2017 - vs Rothkel (easy) 21-15 WNote: Close game, 1 more galaxy upgrade would have given Rothkel the win.4/6/2017 - vs Zendica (medium) 11-21 L4/6/2017 vs Zendica (medium) 21-4 W4/6/2017 vs Hades (hard) 21-11 W4/8/2017 vs Gamelyn (epic) 11-22 L Note: While admittedly a blow out for Gamelyn, it didn't even feel this close! Gamelyn was also on last galaxy upgrade and had Energy maxed for next turn.4/8/2017 vs Gamelyn (epic) 20-21 LNote: Gamelyn was blowing me out until last turn I colonized Gort for 7 points. Again, Gamelyn was on last galaxy upgrade and energy was at 3 on track. 4/8/2017 vs Gamelyn (epic) 22-18 WNote: Once more, Gamelyn was on last galaxy upgrade. I got 2 Energy and a Colonize which allowed me to advance to final galaxy upgrade and squeak out the win. 4/8/2017 vs Pillar of Seven (bonus) 21-14 W4/8/2017 vs Chaos (bonus) 22-10 W4/9/2017 vs The Shadow (bonus) 17-27 LNote: The 2 leftmost starting planets were Nibiru and Shouhua (7 points each). Both Diplomacy. The Shadow had very favorable rolls and was able to snatch these 14 points fast. 4/9/2017 vs The Shadow (bonus) 22-8 W4/9/2017 vs Leech (bonus) 21-12 W4/9/2017 vs Virus (bonus) 22-13 W4/10/2017 vs Ibis (BtB beginner) 29-15 WNote: I won all 4 Exploration badges. 4/13/2017 vs Pendra (BtB easy) 25-15 WNote: I won 2 Exploration badges, tied with other 2.4/15/2017 vs Bliquis (BtB medium) 32-16 WNote: A score blow out but Bliquis was on last Galaxy upgrade. I won 3 of the 4 Exploration badges and tied on last. Last planet taken was Shouhua which I Colonized at 19 points to give me a huge lead. 4/16/2017 vs Chernobog (BtB Hard) 23-25 LNote: Rogue stole all 3 of my Exploration cards which would have given me a win on this battle had I kept them. I had horrible rolls and could not Colonize planets fast enough. Surprised A.I. Only starts with 4 dice.4/16/2017 vs Chernobog (BtB Hard) 25-10 WNote: This time Chernobog had horrible rolls and I was able to Colonize planets fast. Only had 1 pilot and 1 Exploration card. I won 2 Exploration badges other 2 had zeros from both of us. Chernobog only advanced his colony once. 4/16/2017 vs Shipeater (BtB Epic) 22-22 TNote: Shipeater had 14-22 lead. I won all 4 Explorations to tie game. I felt out of the game the whole time, was very surprised with total score. I feel like the key to beating Shipeater is a lot of Exploration in Unknown Space. 4/17/2017 vs Shipeater (BtB Epic) 25-17 WNote: Shipeater was 2 galax[...]

Session: Memoir '44: The Battles of Khalkhin-Gol:: Khalkhin-Gol Campaign (Part 2) Kawatama Bridge

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 22:38:03 +0000

by jesters_race Kawatama BridgeThis second scenario in the campaign takes place in the same area as the first, though this time instead of just an infantry and cavalry reconnaissance force this time the Japanese have armour and artillery support. This time the tanketts make their first appearance so will be interesting to see how they operate. The bridge in the scenario becomes a big prize for the Japanese with it being worth 2 medals and will give them a reinforcement roll for the next scenario.Both sides need to get 5 medals to claim victory.Both side adjust their starting forces based on last scenarios attrition rolls.Early GameThe Japanese kick off with a combined forced advance on their right flank and pound some Russian infantry up on the hills with tank and artillery fire where the Russian unit is destroyed. The Russian are unprepared and are out of range from any of the Japanese forces, they more up some infantry from the rear into the fordable river. The Japanese now launch an attack on the Russians right flank falling upon the MG unit causing it some casualties. The Russians answer the Japanese attack on the right sending some infantry to try and deal with threat. The Japanese reinforce the attack on the right and destroy the Russian MG unit, while the Russians continue to resist throwing in a unit of armoured cars and eliminate one of the Japanese attackers Mid GameThe Japanese spend most of the effort in trying to reach the objective on the bridge. They reduce and force the retreat of another unit in close combat, while the Russians inflict some losses on them in an ambush. The Russians refit one of their depleted armoured units and move into the river, not being able to do much else. The Japanese launch a pincer movement and bring up their armour car on their left flank to help the push to the bridge eliminating an infantry unit, while on the right they attack some Russian cavalry with armour and artillery inflicting heavy losses. Some Russian guns from off board barrage the Japanese advancing on the bridge and destroy a unit. The Japanese keep the pressure on and throw everything at the Russian armoured car but it proves to be elusive and retreats onto the bridge. The Russians now push their armour forward with an armoured assault, they manage to inflict light casualties on the Japanese armour on their left. On the right they push the flame tank and armoured car over the bridge inflicting losses on the infantry and pushing them back but are still left with a Japanese threat in front of the bridge.End GameThe Japanese counter attack and send in their armour, they force the flame tank back with heavy losses onto the bridge. Over on their right they move up their ar[...]

Session: Men of Iron:: Playing Courtrai solo with some of the rules from Blood and Roses

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 18:23:03 +0000

by Bakon I tried a solo game of MOI using some of the Blood and Roses rules and playing Courtrai. The rules backported were:• Using the new seizure rules – involving have a mix of seizure counters to use (e.g. some providing seizure on a roll of 0-7, or disordering a unit). • Allowing a player to pass their turn on a free activation, resulting in the time marker counting down from 12, with zero losing the game for the French.• Eliminating ZOC. Only slight changes to the rules. The unit must stop if it moves adjacent to another enemy unit and it cannot move directly into a hex adjacent to the same enemy unit. If it stays in the hex adjacent to the enemy, it may only change facing one hexside. Units may move away from an adjacent enemy unit for +1 cost (+2 if a foot moves away from a mounted unit). Command is only blocked by units or impassable terrain.• I didn’t play the Flight and Pursuit rules from Blood and Roses, although I could see these could add some flavour to the battle.As expected the French had a very hard time of it. The battle started with the French pike to the north crossing into the ditches and attacking the French shield wall. This was easily repulsed and had little effect on the Flemish pikemen. I actually can’t see how this can be attacked successfully from across the ditches as you have at least a -2 DRM (shield wall and attacking from ditches) as well as the Flemish pike often having a shock DRM of -1 or -2. To the south the French tried to attack the Flemish pike in shield formation from across the ditches with a similar result – the attack was repulsed and through a series of bad rolls much of the French pike retreated and were disorganised. The Flemish pike pressed home their advantage and counter-attacked, eliminating or retiring some of the French forces but also leaving the safety of their position behind the ditches. In response the French mounted men at arms under le Comte d’Aubermarle charged several of the pike with mixed results. Some pike were disorganised or eliminated, but several charging units were also disorganised after continued attacks. To protect the now vulnerable southern ditch position the reserve line of pike under John of Renesse moved south to take up the original line behind the ditches.Flight points at this stage were Flemish – 6, French – 13. At this point it felt like there was no more the French could do - to the North forces of both sides were mostly intact, but there was no way the French were committing to attacking that shield wall again. To the south the original Flemish line of pikemen were scattered and in disarray, with the French pikemen and men at arms also similarly b[...]

Session: Mage Knight Board Game: Shades of Tezla Expansion:: Shades of Tezla Solo Wolfhawk Normal (6-6)

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 17:18:53 +0000

by cityofsolitude IntroThis is my first report of a solo session, I hope this is either fun or helpful to someone (or both). I use my own Sublime Text language mode to make the protocol and this is the reason why I write many words (like mana colors, etc.) with a capital letter, even in full sentences.The goals for this game were the following: - I am playing the new main scenario of Shades of Tezla, so people see what it is like. - I played the game extremely slow, stepping away from the table for each major decision and tried to note some of the thoughts I had (although this ended up being a small fraction). - I decided to use Wolfhawk, I like her and she is one of the less popular mage knights. - I want to show how a game of standard difficulty can be handled by weighing ones options. - To a lesser extend I am showcasing the faction tokens and how they can be used.Hero: WolfhawkDummy (random): NorowasDay 1AA-Offer: Blood Ritual, Training, Heroic TaleSpell-Offer: Chill, Mana Bolt, CharmUnit-Offer: Illusionists, Northern Monks, ShocktroopsSource: White, White, BlackHand: Swiftness, Tirelessness, Concentration, Improvisation, MarchCrystals: -Thoughts: - Norowas has two White crystals, I'd rather not give him Heroic Tale. - The graveyard is in swamps and currently I have no way of defeating the Mummy, would need some fire! - The deep mine is nice and very close, since there is only White mana in the source, I ponder going there first. - The mage tower will then be revealed as well and I can see if I go there or towards the keep. - The village is close, but irrelevant, since I cannot recruit anything and I have a nice hand already. - The White mine is too far off and its White, lol. - I can reach the deep mine with Tirelessness and March, so I could take Planning, seems better than mana steal here.Tactic: Planning (4)Dummy: Great Start (5)Turn 1Tirelessness + March: Move 5 (N, NE)Reveal Ice GolemsSource: White, White, BlackGain Green CrystalHand: Swiftness, Concentration, Improvisation, Determination, Tranquility, Swift ReflexesCrystals: GreenDummy: 4 (12)Thoughts: - Ice Golems seem really bad, on the other hand, I can block their attack and Swift Reflexes might help as well. - The mage tower would be good for several reasons: - I am already here. - The golems are 5 xp. - I can recruit the Illusionists. - I can do so with heroic tale, white mana does not seem to be a problem with the source. - To take the tower I need Move 3, Attack 8 and Block 4 or work with Swift Reflexes to reduce the attack. - Attack is best generated with Concentration I think and I have the mana. - I should use mana from the source, i.e., for Swif[...]

Session: March of the Ants: Minions of the Meadow:: Searching for the Broodmother, a solo session report

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 16:24:07 +0000

by maloma I'm on my 5th play and am getting destroyed. I have had several rules things come up and I thought recording my play may not only help me figure out how to win but may also help others that are digging into this solo beast get a handle on all of the new things added.This is my first ever session report so bear with me as I stumble through.Initial Setup - Easy with all modules added. As far as initiative tokens I mistakenly only took a set of my color and treated them like symbiotic and had to decide to sacrifice a token to cancel a broodmother reaction instead of just taking 2 complete sets to cancel actions. I like the variant I have been using and although it adds the +1 strength, steps and feeding it affects the times you cancel an action.3 initiative/symbiotic tokens, 5 (L)arvae, 2 (f)ood, starting hex 2a-Rockdown with 3 (A)nts and 1 (aph)id, 4 cards Event-Queen's Journey Event-Cache of Eggs Evolution-Harvester Thorax Evolution-Jack Jumper AbdomenRound 1 (S)eason Nuptial Winds -1 to play evolutionTurn 1 Play a Card (PaC) -1 (L)arvae, Event-Cache of Eggs +3L +1 card Colony Goal-Xenophobic TribeReaction Plot (1) +1(C)entipede ptTurn 2 PaC -2L w/S, Evolution-Harvester Thorax (+1L for each L collection after exploring) +Scout ability for Major Worker(MW)Reaction Expand 3a-Overleaf +1aph +1(n)ymphTurn 3 Breed -2L MW on 2aReaction Plot (2) +1C ptTurn 4 Explore -1f, 6-Worker's Edge +2L(Evolution) for MW and A, Scout 9-Lichen MWReaction Spawn 1, +1C on 3a, +1n on 2a,3a,6 & 9Turn 5 March -1f, 2L to 2a, MW to 9to6, MW 6to2a, MW 2ato3a, 2A 3ato2a, Battle C 1+1, A 4+3f, win -1A +1f +1A ptReaction Plot (3) +1C pt, Machinations Track level 2 +1 nymphTurn 6 PaC -1L w/S, Evolution-Jack Jumper Abdomen +Populate ability for MWReaction Plot (1) +1C ptTurn 7 Explore -1f, 12-Mud +2L(Evolution) for MW and A, Scout 19-Bark +1C MWReaction Plot (2) +1C ptTurn 8 PaC -3L, Event-A Queen's Journey, 14-Humus place 1LReaction Spawn 2, No Centipedes, +2 nymphs 3a,6,9,12,14,19Turn 9 Rest +1LReaction Spawn 1, +1C 14, +nymphs 3a,9,12,14End of Round 1 Worker PhaseSoldier Phase Contested 14,19 Rally 19 place 2L14 Battle C 11, A 2, loss lone survivor +1C pt19 Battle C 8, A 8, win -2A lone survivor +1f +1A ptHarvest Phase +2L, +1f, +2L, +1f, +1LFeed -1f 6 antsRoyal Decree +5LSlumber +2A pt, +4C ptEnd of Round 1, C 10pt, A 4ptRound 2 (S)eason Cultural Radiation +1 card worker, soldier, queenTurn 1 (S)+1 card Colony Goal-Nurturing Hive, Breed -2L MW to 14Reaction Plot (3) +1C pt Machinations Track level 3 predator- Fungus added to 2a at Health 6, 3 sporesTurn 2to be continued... [...]

Session: Pacific Fleet:: Scenario 1 Guadalcanal AAR (Illustrated)

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 14:40:07 +0000

by M St This is the first scenario in the old rulebook, intended as a sort of tutorial. When we played this a few years ago, I hadn't played the game for 15 years or so. Here is the opening situation, with the Marines on Guadalcanal.In the first Phase, the Japanese decided that a big initial effort was needed - once the US had air and a fully supplied Marine division on Guadalcanal, they would be nearly impossible to budge. So the Japanese immediately sent their initial brigade at Rabaul to Guadalcanal, escorted by the cruisers at Rabaul. Both sides predictably sailed their carriers. The inital confrontation was generally balanced but the dierolling was not, with the Japanese getting the short end of the stick. On the US side, Saratoga was damaged and sent home for repairs. On the Japanese side Shokaku and Zuiho were sunk, Zuikaku was sent home for repairs. So the Allies immediately achieved superiority in carriers. The surface combat around Guadalcanal proved indecisive and the Japanese landed their brigade. This turned out to be no match for the Marines and the US attacked, driving the Japanese back.In the next phase, the Japanese, with only one CVL (Ryujo) remaining, pulled back to Truk. The US started building air on Guadalcanal. Air and naval ground support pushed the situation further to favour the US. We actually overlooked the draconian constraints on Japanese amphibious landings, so the Japanese landed their reinforcement division on Guadalcanal in Phase 3, achieving numerical equality in ground troops. (More on this below.)The Japanese also sailed virtually all their surface units, assembling several huge task forces that would provide ground support. Due to the Japanese supply restrictions, this would be a one time effort, consuming 2/3 of the remaining Naval Supply Levels at Truk. The Americans had sailed their carriers again. However, this time, bad luck caught up with them and Japanese submarines torpedoed Enterprise and the freshly arrived Hornet before they could launch strikes. Enterprise was out for months, and Hornet was sunk. Wasp was the only remaining US carrier. The US airstrikes focused on the transports, scoring hits which meant the Japanese division would land with reduced supply. A US cruiser-destroyer task force bravely confronted the Japanese juggernaut, but the combat was quite one-sided and about half the US ships were sunk for little gain. However, in the ground support phase, the air units on Guadalcanal made their weight felt and the US Land Supply Point level (LSPs) ended up better. The Marines attacked again and the Japane[...]

Session: Terraforming Mars:: Teaser: Solo including 2017 releases

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 14:40:03 +0000

by Fryxen How Aphrodite changed the world In 2327, just 12 years after the terraforming announcement, the World Government released another statement, expanding the terraforming goal to include Venus as well! In order to avoid delays on the terraforming of Mars, the WG joined the terraforming too. Aphrodite corporation, a soil expert with development contracts on Venus, jumped at this new chance and plunged headfirst into the endeavor. The Aphrodite CEO at that time, Ingrid Leonardo (Aphrodite had a very strong tradition of always choosing female CEOs), wisely secured future funding by initiating long term projects in the Venusian atmosphere, both providing Local Shading for rich clients, and deploying millions of Jetstream Microscrappers to reduce the atmosphere over time. These projects were to provide the foundation of Aphrodite’s success, and after Ingrid’s successors Emma Petri and Maria Jacovitti struggled to get some terraforming done on Mars, the microscrappers were reinforced by the next CEO Eleanor Farvello in 2442, deploying Aerial Mappers that could find suitable construction materials, as well as optimal deployment patterns in the clouds. With the help of the WG, the carbon dioxide was thawed out from Mars’ soils during the reign of Marta Oleus, who also stepped up the presence on Venus by constructing Dirigibles that could help deliver new scrappers, as well as goods throughout the thick Venusian atmosphere. Her devotion to the Venusian project was continued by Nosipo Rodini in the 2490s with the launch of a special Air Scrapping Expedition. The terraforming of Venus was now going so well that the planned Venus Magnetizer was abandoned and focus was shifted to Mars, still a barren desert. When the Venusian society recognized the steady results of the microscrappers, they elected the next CEO Nina Dolinska to be Venus Governor in 2543. This was celebrated by spectacular fireworks when the terraforming of Mars began in earnest and a hundred obsolete warheads were detonated on the South Pole, creating a Nuclear Zone, and melting a lot of permafrost into water which could run north into the gigantic Hellas basin. With several terraforming processes now underway, Daniela Linneaus decided it was time to start stepping up the colonization. Introduction of Venusian Animals celebrated and demonstrated the terraforming progress on Venus, and over the years many species were to be designed and introduced. By arranging the Olympus Conference, a scientific era was initiated, and in honor of her acient ancestor Carl von Linneaus,[...]

Session: Pandemic:: Pandemic Survival @ WABAcon 2017

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 14:38:03 +0000

by tallboy At WABACon 2017 on 8 & 9 April 2017 I ran a Pandemic Survival Tournament.In trying to put this event together I found there was not much information around about running it (Z Man/Asmodee were not able to assist). I was able to gather some information from several people that I found through various threads on BGG, who were prepared to share their experiences with an enquiring stranger. Apart from capturing what happened at the event, this session report is also for the benefit of anyone like me that is trying to research how to run a similar event. For this reason I have also included the set up at the bottom.Pandemic Survival is an “extreme” version of Pandemic where twelve teams of two players compete to save the world. Their goal: to be the first team to find all four cures, or to be the last team still alive at the end of the game. In this tournament-style version of the game all teams started in the same position and faced the same problems: they all draw the same player cards; the Epidemics struck at the same time for all teams; every team has the same role cards. A game master called out the same Infection cards for everyone. The only difference was the decisions that teams made. Their strategic choices led each team in different directions, and only one strategy paid off in the end to lead to victory. Although teams were given some information, they never completely knew what the other teams are up to. One of the challenges was having twelve copies of Pandemic to run the game. Borrowing the games was simple, adjusting the tournament to deal with the differing versions of the base game limited the range of player roles available to use.SCENARIO - maybe you don't want to know it yet...[o] government is in turmoil. The funding for your operations has been cut and your team is paralysed by a government shutdown. By the time your government comes to its senses and releases some funds, will it all be too late?- To represent the lack of funding, each player may only take a number of actions equal to the number of counters they have.- This means at the beginning of the game each player only has two actions.- There is an additional action choice available, so players now have five to choose from- The new action is Transfer Funds – you may transfer an action counter to another player. You do not need to both be in the same city to take the Transfer Funds action.- Whenever your team reaches a space on the Infection track or the Outbreak[...]

Session: Sentinels of the Multiverse:: I bet this won't end well....

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:44:11 +0000

by collectible cardinal WM [51] in the Final Wasteland, vs. Santa Guise [25], Rook City Wraith [27], Nightmist [27], and The Hunted Naturalist [27].Setup: WM begins with Wagelings x3 [6, 6, 6] and Who Are You Fighting? in play (Who? was played after the first Wageling). Thanks to Who?, the players draw five cards to start; Guise has Blatant Reference, Retcon, Selling Out, I Can Do That Too, and Super Ultra Kawaii. Wraith draws Combat Stance, Impromptu Invention, Suture Self, Micro Targeting Computer, and a completely useless Inventory Barrage. Nightmist gets Heedless Lash, Mistbound, Mist Form, Oblivion, and Mists of Time. Naturalist starts with Indomitable Force, Blend Into The Pack x2, Natural Form’s Power and Feral Fury.Villain 1: Villain targets are only equal to hero targets, so no insta-loss. Plays What Do You Really Know? All the Wagelings deal a total of 3 damage to all heroes [Guise 22, others 24]. What? Shuffles in a card from each hero deck.Guise: Just for the sake of doing so, Guise uses “I Can Do That Too” on himself, copying his first Gift-Mas power to buy everyone a present, then opens his own present on his Power phase, getting Xtreeeeeeeeme!!! (yes, that is exactly the correct number of E’s, and I got it right without checking first). Draws the other copy of that same card.Wraith: Impromptu draws a Utility Belt, plays Throwing Knives from the deck, and plays MTC from hand. All three Wagelings are hit [3]. Draws Trust Fund.Misty: Plays Heedless Lash. Puts Starshield Necklace {1} into play, taking 1 [23] and hitting the first Wageling for 1 [2]. Investigates [21], drawing Call Forth, Mistbound, and Heedless Lash. Discards Mists of Time {4} to heal [25].Natch: Plays Blend Into The Pack, then emulates a Crocodile and plays Feral Fury. The previously damaged Wageling flips face-down, and a different one is reduced to [1]. Draws Indomitable Force.Enviro 1: Abominable Snowman [9] enters play.Villain 2: Does not flip, nor ends the game. Plays Impossible Quandary; each hero self-damages for 3 psychic [Guise 19, Wraith 21, Nightmist 22], but Naturalist feels slightly less mental anguish, just knowing that the Yeti exists [22]. Alas, the Wagelings is flipped face-up, although Impossible Quandary says nothing about treating it as though it was just played, so I think it just stays face-up at 0 HP until its HP is again “reduced”. Alas, since there isn’t a face-down card, Guise can’t put Xtreeeeeeeeme!!! into his hand, so it was completely wasted.[...]

Session: Agricola, Master of Britain:: AAR - A "slacker" Agricola

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:43:06 +0000

by juno29 After a lots of plays here and there with this game, I just want to share this AAR in which I used my so called: "the slacker strategy", in which most of my actions... I'll just pass . Seems strange, but I consistently arrive to the last turns with this trick.Please bear in mind that it's my first AAR and English is not my first language. Once said that, I hope you like it SETUPI got a crowded setup with: - 9 tan Tribal Units and 1 Enemy Leader at Deceangly, - and 4 green Tribal Units; two of them at Brigantes.And for my legions I just put my four blue Auxiliaries Units and Agricola on the XX Valeria VictrixTURN ONE- First action: GarrisonII Augusta move to Dubunni and made my first garrison. It leads to an Hostile reaction: another Tribal Unit appears at Brigantes, and an Internecine War began with the result of a Votadini Tribal Unit going to the death pool.- Second action: GarrisonIX Hispana moves to Cornovvi and made my second garrison. The Hostile reaction was another green Tribal Unit at Parisi.- Third Action: BattleAgricola march with XX Valeria Victrix to Silures. The battle was fought against 7 enemies. During the battle one enemy unit became Isolated and I won without casualties.After that, one of my units became a 3 aquila, and I reorganized my soldiers: one Augusta 1 aquila unit from Augusta goes to Valeria Victrix; and one Valeria Victrix 2 aquilas unit goes to Augusta.The Hostile reaction for the battle came with a red Tribal Unit at Caledoni, and a green Leader at Brigantes.- HousekeepingI pay four coins of my treasure to convert the two garrisons to Settlements, and I won 3 VP (2 for my two veteran units and 1 for the blue region without Tribal Units). I barely made to the second turn.TURN TWO- First action: BattleAgricola march with XX Valeria Victrix to Demetae. I got lucky and I fought against only three enemies, so I won easily. I can't made any reorganization and my green 1 aquila unit became line. The hostile reaction was a third Tribal unit on Ordovice that destroyed one tribal unit on Deceangli with their Internecine War. Another green tribal unit appears at Parisi.- Second action: GarrisonVictorious Agricola and the XX Valeria Victrix construct a garrison at Silures; a tribal unit appears at Damnoni. - Third Action: PassingWith 3 remaining actions I won three VP (for a total of six VP), and depleted my friendly cup. A hostile unit appears at Votadini- HousekeepingI upgraded my two +2 Settlement to +3 (four coins in total), and in[...]

Session: Mansions of Madness: Second Edition:: Rising Tide Scenario - narrative story (spoilers within)

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:42:07 +0000

by mackamus2508 Played this scenario on Friday night. It was a long game - over 4 hours - but it kept us hooked throughout.We played with the following investigators; Harvey Walters - The Professor (insanity - pyromaniac)Preston Fairpoint - The Millionaire (insanity - narcissism)Darrell Simmons - The Photographer (insanity - can't remember ????)Having only played one scenario before, we were not expecting the change of pace in this scebario. More a detective story than a traditional game, it was a fantastic experience.I have written a narrative narrative that details our exploits, and even though I have tried to avoid any spoilers I would warn any potential readers that this remains a possibility.[o]RISING TIDEThe orange glow of the spreading flames illuminated the crowded street. The salty air blowing in from the sea only seemed to encourage the flames more, the freely flowing air pushing them further from the broken lantern that marked their source. Black smoke billowed into the nights sky, and the wooden rafters of a nearby warehouse were already beginning to show signs of pyrolysis. The crackle and pop of burning wood was clearly audible, the moisture evaporating under the intensely gathering heat.That bleak morning the docks were alive with noise, though not that which would be expected of a sleepy port town at such hours of the night. These noises were both of a man-made, and an altogether more eldritch origin.Harvey Walters gripped the crowbar tightly to his side, knuckles white, as he backed himself into the corner of the street - the better to prevent any assaults on his person. The street had filled by now with a rioting crowd, townspeople who had decided that the strangers to their town would pay the ultimate price for their transgressions.A wild swing or two with the heavy weapon had been sufficient to keep them back for now, and instead the crowd goaded each other into making the first assault even as more hoodlums emerged from the smouldering warehouse.However, amongst the townspeople, Harvey could see an alien figure, its distinct features marking it out as different from this superstitious rabble. It's very image was enough to invoke terror within his very soul, a psyche that had suffered tremendously in the preceding five days and one that, even with all the occult knowledge open to one as learned as he, could not have begun to prepare itself to confront.Bodies littered the floor, again not human corpses as one would ex[...]

Session: Gloomhaven:: Chapter 4 - Scenario #3 (Spoilers)

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:39:50 +0000

by sevitrm Spoilers ahead. Read at your own risk. -----------------------------------------------------------------------Chapter 4 – Inox Encampment (#3)Trudging ourselves back into the noisy, depraved city of Gloomhaven we head toward the Sanctuary of the Great Oak. We enter the peaceful glade and part ways as the human heads over to talk to the gypsy ranger who started the training of her new pet and I proceed over to make another donation. This is the only place in the city that reminds me of the outdoors, quiet, fresh air and sounds of the forest bring me to peace. I sit quietly in the shade and think about our next adventure. More crypts, darkness, stench of death and “Gloom” or the outdoor raiding camp of the Inox that Jekserah wants us to take care. Might need to try and talk the human into the great outdoors the next time around.The dog had learned to sit, stay and lay down while I had been gone. I knew we would stay in town for a bit longer so I could work with the dog. Working with the ranger we made sure the dog would listen to my voice and practised the commands he had already learned. Knowing Ragnar was relaxing in solitude, the puppy and I strolled over and sat down next to him. “What are you thinking of naming it?”, asked Ragnar, surprising me with the interest, as he tore off a piece of meat and threw to the dog, being uncharacteristically kind. “I dunno yet,” I answered, pouring some water into a small bowl for the pup, and then commented, “Maybe something that has to do with speed like Strike or something.” Ragnar looked thoughtful for a moment before grunting in either satisfaction or disinterest, “What are you going to do with him when we head out again,” he asked. “The trainer and I came up with a plan to teach him some new commands such as rolling over, sensing and alerting me of danger and staying beside me instead of running ahead. I’ll be working with him while we stay in town and will continue when we get back.”Sitting and enjoying a cold drink at the Sleeping Lion a heavily scarred Inox approaches us and helps herself to the open chair at our table. She pushes forward a piece of paper, “An interested party would like to hire you to steal a valuable figurine from a residence in the Battlements,” she says matter-of-factly. “The details are on the paper. Meet me in the back alley in two days’ time after the job is done.” Looking at e[...]

Session: The Lamps Are Going Out:: Game report: 1916-end

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 09:40:47 +0000

by jim bailey 1916, Spring – Germany pushes Russia back into Petrograd. Salonika event allows landing by British unit and an attack into Serbia which is occupied by a Bulgarian army; the attack fails. The WA must hope for Greece to join the TE so that additional British units can be moved into Greece; otherwise, this will remain a stalemate. The British successfully attack Gallipoli and Baghdad but fail attacking Jerusalem. Romania joins the TE and successfully invades Hungary. This will probably prove nothing more than a distraction to AH. Russia attacks Galicia in an attempt to sap Austrian forces, but the attack is brutally repulsed. Austria retakes Hungary, but its attack on Romania fails, and the Austrian attack on Petrograd failed miserably. That loss was significant for both sides in that any success would likely have meant Germany would take Petrograd and Moscow on the next turn (this still remotely possible).I should note at this point that technological developments are roughly equal with the exception of air power. Germany has all three levels, while the WA have none.1916, Summer – Terrible rolls for the German prevents any progress against Petrograd despite significant manpower advantage. Wildly successful rolls allow the WA to push into Austria! The Austrians decide on a holding action in Vienna and press the Russians more in the hope that Germany can knock them out next turn.1916, Fall – Germany moves resources from the West to defeat Russia. The move works, but the question is whether it will make Germany vulnerable in the West. Britain is successful in all attacks in the ME; the Basra army moves to Mosul. Things are getting tight in all areas, but the defeat of Russia probably spells doom for the TE. With rolls as successful as the WA had, the Austrians retake Austria.1916, Winter – The Gallipoli campaign is successful and the British take the Dardanelles (thanks to getting the phosgene gas card in the event phase); however, given the availability of Austrian units freed from fighting the Russians, the Austrians and Bulgarians retake the area, forcing the British unit into a naval evacuation.At this point, the game looks over for the TE. A steady stream of Austrian and German units from the Eastern front means that not only will the other fronts be stabilized, but that Paris will be threatened which will force the British to pull back from Greece and probably V[...]

Session: Napoleon’s Quagmire:: Talavera – Day of Battle

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 09:40:37 +0000

by Andrew H After Medellin moving through Quagmire chronologically we come to Talavera. Cuesta’s Spanish Army has united with Wellesley’s British and have settled on a defensive posture. The British Army is organised as the Spanish in five small divisions, one of which is cavalry. The individual units have much better initiative ratings than the Spanish (mostly 3) and Wellesley himself, with a command rating of 3 can keep all of his force in command, as long as they are within the four hex command range. Cuesta has six infantry and two cavalry divisions. For the French Victor has I Corps, Sebastiani most of IV Corps, Latour-Maubourg with the 1st and Milhaud with the 3rd Cavalry and Joseph with the Reserve. Worth pointing out Joseph is an Officer-Commander as he has a formation designation in his counter; this means he must put the Reserve into command and then command one other unit or divisional attack. The other French officers rely on their own initiative. Played on a half size map the northern half is taken up with the various hills and villages of the Sierra de Segurilla, which historically formed a flank to the Allied deployment. The action happens in the bottom left quadrant where the British are deployed on the Cerro de Medellin and behind the Arroyo de La Portina. At the redoubt half way down (at Pajar de Vergara) the Spanish take up the line, deployed a little more forward down to the walled town of Talavera. The rules don’t say this, but I assume units behind Town walls defend as in a chateau if attacked.One feature I do not understand is the redoubt at the north of the British line, at Cortijo de Valdelfuente. Oman’s History does not mention this feature, and as it was in the British line I am sure he would have. I left it there as the designer has other sources I do not have; it did play a significant part in my refight. Played as always solo, with the ‘In Command One Hex’ House Rule from Napoleon Against Russia* and the ‘artillery moves like trains’ rule, which proves important. Talavera setupBefore the action started the Mode Cards determined the Allies received replacements and I Corps was in road column. This delayed the initial French advance as the Corps had to reorganise and it was not until 11am the French advanced. Their attack was on the north and east of the Medellin, with the Latour-Maubourg’s cavalry engaging[...]

Session: South Pacific: Breaking the Bismarck Barrier 1942-1943:: AAR: Securing the Bismarck Barrier

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 09:36:15 +0000

by MoriQuessir South Pacific is a great way to learn or refresh it famous parent's rules (Empire of the Sun). This scenario-game is dedicated to breaking the Bismarck barrier, which is Japanese controlled archipelago dominated by New Britania.In the game terms, the player who controls 3 resource/port hexes more than his opponent wins the game. There are 21 such hexes on the map, 12 of them start under the Japanese control and 9 of them are Allied controlled. There are also some automatic victory possibilities, if one manage to destroy all enemy HQs, all Allied naval units or drop US Political Will to continue the war to 0. All other outcomes considered a draw.Scenario starts in the eve of the Operation Watchtower, allied invasion on island Guadalcanal. Allied player even has the card of the same name in his starting hand (under Future Offensive marker). Blue and yellow markers represent Air Zones of Influence.First turn was quite lucky for the Japanese. Americans tried to capture the Guadalcanal several times, but every time the Japanese intelligence roll was successful and IJN saved the day, so the marines were turned back to continue the rest on Hebrides.Allied took the operational pause to regroup on the second turn, so Japanese took advantage of the situation: their 18th army was transported to start the offensive on Port Moresby by ground next card play! After the fierce fighting, Port Moresby fell to Japanese hands. So the Joint ANZAC HQ fled on the turn track and Bismarck barrier looked as strong as never.On the third turn, there was a first Allied successful amphibious invasion on the Gili Gili, east end of the New Guinea. The base could allow Allies to recapture the Port Moresby by the ground offensive.On the last turn, Japanese tried to secure the victory opportunity by capturing Espiritu-Santo, one of the northern islands in New Hebrides. The operation was a success! Several Allied stacks were pinned by declaring the Combat Hexes, invasion force reached the empty island, but anyway, Allied special reaction roll was a miss. Allied took the island back via next card play, but it wasn't enough to deny the Japanese victory! Here's the Allied losses to the end of the game.Great game and great scenario! [...]

Session: Balkans 1941:: Steamroller in the Balkans - Main Scenario AAR [lots of photos]

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 09:16:57 +0000

by M St Twenty years since release; how time flies. Seems like a good point to repost this AAR (posted on CSW in 2013) on BGG. Here is the setup. April I: The air campaign started with the Germans throwing most of their fighters into air superiority and causing serious losses among the various Allied plane contingents. In the northwest, the Germans only made slow progress. However, they attacked Belgrade right away with five motorized divisions and the GD and HG motorized brigades, and rolled a 1! Against a desperate defense to the death, massive losses were taken in the attack by every unit. However, due to the unprepared state of the Yugoslav units, the defenders were eliminated and Belgrade fell. The Germans were able to reorganise their divisions before the Yugoslavs had time to organise a counterattack with fresh forces. Attacking out of Bulgaria into Greece, the Germans had a similarly painful experience, as three infantry divisions were reduced in breaching the Greek border forts. However, a second assault by three Panzer divisions went smoothly and the Greeks were thrown back. The Allies hurriedly tried to form a line. There was no chance of retaking Belgrade, but the Yugoslavs at least established a sizeable blocking force (four divisions) south of Belgrade. The Greeks fell back on Salonika, maintaining a border garrison. Now all depended on how the Yugoslav government would weather the shock. Unfortunately, it didn't. At the end of the turn, Yugoslavia collapsed. Only six combat units remained on the map. Ironically, two of these were the border garrison of Monastir, who vowed to fight to the death to deny the crossing to the Germans. April II: The Germans started mopping up the other Yugoslav units in the north, including the single hex of partisan activity that had developed north of Zagreb. The air campaign continued, with the Axis eliminating almost all resistance and Italian bombers taking the port of Athens out of action.Having breached the Greek border, the Germans turned west and 3 Pz divisions marched towards Salonika, especially important as Italian bombers had just put the port of Athens out of operation. The garrison, consisting of the 2nd NZ division and the Greek motorized division, prepared to sell the city dearly. However, the Pz Divisions probed around the city, eve[...]

Session: Monmouth:: A Win for Washington

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 06:10:24 +0000

by oceanweather Played a super game of Monmouth (GMT) with John O. yesterday. This game, of course, is from Mark Miklos' American Revolutionary War series. Its on the easier end of the complexity scale though lots of regiments means lots of carnage over 14 game turns. The British Army is superb in this one with both Clinton and Cornwallis present, plenty of elite Grenadier and light infantry backed by a plethora of Royal artillery. The American Army, three years in to the war, is no slouch either though there is still a smattering of quick to run militia and the General Lee command and control rules cause random American brigades to wander the battlefield for the first half of the game.Our match was exploratory as neither of us had played this one before and did not know what to expect. The Americans, with an early advantage in numbers, struck hard driving  back the British rear guard. A provincial cavalry unit and leader was captured and a key village was under American infantry assault and about to be captured. The arrival of the main British army mid-game quickly righted the situation forcing the American army to retreat until General Washington was able to remove Lee from command. Washington then was able to set up a steady, reliable American battle line. End game saw a bloody struggle in map middle. An American double turn led to the British line outflanked and forced to retreat with multiple "D" results and fatiguing army morale. Great, great fun in 6 hours of play.John outplayed me in this one. I handed him two momentum chits early by attacking an isolated rearguard unit with insufficient force and poor DRMs. He danced away not once but twice. I also gifted him three of my best regiments and a precious artillery unit by a badly situated defensive hex that was unable to retreat due to nearby friendly stacking limits. John saw this and promptly pounded it into submission, the disaster amplified by his initiative winning back-to-back turns. He also outperformed me on the tactical card draw, giving himself an extra pip on the die in all the right combats. His aggressive use of artillery backed by carefully selected infantry assaults surprised me and sent many of my regiments running for the rear. I need to think through in future games how to I can han[...]

Session: Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft Board Game:: A Ranger Hounded

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 06:10:07 +0000

by Rodney1120 This is a story written by me, based on a session of Adventure 88: Hounded created by Frostmarrow ( Here is Frostmarrow's original thread about the adventure: The first part of the story is based on Adventure 1 from the Adventure Book that came with the game.Allisa, a human ranger, woke up disoriented in a cold stone room with a huge sarcophagus. She realized that she had been attacked by the notorious vampire Count Strahd von Zarovich. Dawn must have been close when she encountered him outside the inn, so the foul villain had dragged her back to his lair in Castle Ravenloft. He must have barely had enough time to slip into the coffin beside her. Allisa herself had spent the better part of the day sleeping off the count's attack, but now there was enough daylight left for her to kill him while he slumbered. She tried to remove the lid of the coffin, but it was sealed tight. Before she could think what to do next, monsters started creeping out of the shadows. She tried to fight them off, but soon realized she had to run. She raced through the corridors of the castle as more monsters closed in on her, attacking and inflicting wounds as she passed them. As the sun set, she heard the lid of the great coffin sliding off, and she became desperate for a way out. Fighting through monsters, Strahd on her heels, Allisa turned a blind corner. With her keen ranger senses, she noticed several rats slipping through a crack in a floor tile. The tile rung hollowly when she stepped on it. She crouched down and found she could slide the tile aside. Underneath was a secret stairway! There was faint light shining at the bottom. She slipped into the hole and slid the tile closed above her, just as she heard Strahd’s footsteps round the corner. His footfalls clattered across the tile, but he did not slow, as he thought he was racing after her. Allisa descended the stairs to the bottom and found herself outside the north wall of the castle. For the moment she was alone, and she collapsed to the ground in exhaustion, her back leaning against the wall.Coming to a short time later, Allisa looked around. A wall to the left of the stairway alcove jutte[...]

Session: Power Grid:: Our Brexit From GothCon

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 02:39:22 +0000

by Older Nick With the end of GothCon XLI looming over us, we were desperately looking for a game room that wasn’t closing so we could play one final game. At the moment, Power Grid was the prefered option.To our great joy, the British themed gaming room was not closing for the night, and they had a copy of Power Grid. As the room was British themed, the game box only contained the map with the British Isles. Since we hadn’t played that map previously, I had a quick look at the rules.They were in German.Since no one at our table could actually read German, the quick look became rather long, but I was able to piece together enough information to feel comfortable enough to play anyway.Unfortunately, I missed the part about the Step 3 card being placed third from the bottom instead of at the bottom of the pile. More about that later.We removed the two southern parts of the map, leaving two areas on each island. David and Emil both set up in Scotland and England, while me and Lars decided to have a go at Ireland.The initial bidding for Power Plants saw Emil bid for one of weaker plants too make sure he ended up in last place. Clever.The initial buying of resources saw Lars buying as much coal as possible. Had I remembered that he did this in our previous game, I would’ve started with a different Power Plant.My revenge for this was to place my starting point close to his, eventually blocking him from getting out of Northern Ireland.The market turned out to be rather weird, with either very strong of very weak Power Plants available. Both Emil and David got a strong one each, leaving us Irish far behind with our outdated plants.The turnaround came when I was the first to jump across the Irish Sea. This not only blocked Emil’s planned move, but gave me a really good position for Step 2. Lars soon followed suit, giving David the same treatment in Scotland.This allowed me to catch up with Emil and David, while Lars was still suffering from wasting money on coal (and my blocking).The weirdness of the market continued, with mostly weak Power Plants appearing (after the game, it was revealed that the four plants removed had all been mid-powered cards).As it turned out, luck of the draw allowed Lars to buy two strong plants whil[...]

Session: What Ho, World!:: First game

Tue, 18 Apr 2017 02:11:36 +0000

by hildea

We played this yesterday, it was fun.

We were four players:

Alistair "Marbles" Ridgerole, highbrow
Turn collection of junk into fortune or fame -- make an art installtion from it
Prevent international incident from spiralling out of control -- a painting given to the French embassy in London was a fake, Alistair had the original

Sir Wilfred II of Duffield, old relative
Marry beloved from a different class
Get partygoers to leave

Mr James Laminirc, servant to sir Wilfred
Put on local fete -- which failed, so he then needed to hire new staff instead of those who left because of the fete disaster
Obtain a valuable antique -- which belonged to sir Wilfred

Percy "Puffer" Smythe-Covington, gadabout
Break up an unfortunate engagement -- his great-uncle Wilfred's engagement to a former servant
Restore an expensive item -- while drunk he'd drawn a moustache on a painting, but couldn't remember if it was Alistair's portrait which belonged to the French embassy or the antique which mr Laminirc wanted to obtain from sir Wilfred

We tried to intertwine goals and person as much as possible, which mostly worked well, but we should have avoided the goals which were in direct conflict (sir Wilfred's engagement).

We found that it became difficult and clumsy to use different assets every time we tried to advance goals, and decided to try a few house rules the next time we play:

- Draw a couple extra assets which everyone can use
- Not require using assets to bank cards under goals when you advance them
- Instead require using at least two assets to accomplish a goal

Session: Talon:: Combined Talon and S4X session

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 23:51:46 +0000

by jupiter6 Hi all, AFter dropping my wife and kid off at the airport, I came home and immediately got out Talon and Space Empires (I realised I hadn't played it in a couple of years!) to play a solitaire Talon S4X combined Alien Empires game. This was the perfect opportunity - I could spread out and leave it set up for as long as I needed to, as long as I finished the game within 3 weeks!I put S4X on the kitchen table, and Talon on the lounge room floor. I quite like sitting on the floor while playing. I also got out my planets I made for Talon with the intention of using them somewhere in the game.Here are my experiences in no particular order:The game does take longer, but it wasn't taking as long as I expected. With the occasional 30 minute battle in Talon amongst the strategic manoeuvring on S4X, it wasn't like it was adding hours and hours to proceedings The first battles in Talon were quite short. Alien fleets earlier on tend to be a DD or two, so there isn't much to do. Some battles I called the result early, as I didn't see any point drawing out what is a foregone conclusion. For example, there was only ever going to be one result when an alien DD was up against a Base so I just gave the win to myself to save time.There are an awful lot of adaptations you have to remember, and I forgot to use a lot of them. I completely forgot about attack and defence tech S4X altering the die rolls in Talon so most battles weren't' completely fair in that sense. I'm not big on detailed and in-depth rules (I want to get on with doing stuff, not page through rulebooks looking for a particular rule before I can do stuff), which is probably why I hadn't played S4X in a few years and played Talon pretty much exclusively.My advice is to have a good read over the Talon S4X rules and expecially the table which describes how S4X tech integrates into Talon.I really liked shifting from one location to another when there was a battle. The variety helped keep me focused.Setup time for each Talon battle wasn't too bad. A lot of the time, the fleets were almost identical, so I just left a few DD counters, scouts and frigates on the table ready to go. All I needed to do was to write the start[...]

Session: Terraforming Mars:: First solo play through

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 23:47:16 +0000

by DadKev So I've had this game for about a month. I have put off playing it because I am a relative new gamer (if you don't count Sorry/Monopoly etc). And I'm a bit obsessive compulsive and wanted to create the perfect accessory collection. So I watched a very long play through video on YouTube that explained the game, which really helped with all my questions. First I had to double sleeve the cards. Don't ask me why, I just HAD to. Then I had to buy wooden overlays for the player boards. They ended up being very important to my enjoying the game (I have arthritis in my thumb joints and holding on to those little cubes can be difficult, so having individual divets to hold the cubes was a big help.) I also laminated the player cards before I attached them to the overlays so none of the printing would rub off. I bought a box organizer separately from the overlays and it proved to be almost totally useless--the card holder was not big enough to hold all the cards, there was an oversized first player rover that is just silly. But I DO use the resource and token holders and the oxygen and temperature markers (cut out of wood). I also found a pewter Mars Rover token to use to keep track of the generations, so I don't use the white plastic cubes at all. And this morning, I finally played the game for the first time. SUCCESS! Not only did I enjoy the game, I actually succeeded in reaching all the mission goals, with a final VP score of 75--and felt very smug about that! I was really worried most of the way through, because I didn't think I could POSSIBLY reach my oxygen and temperature goals before the end of the 14th generation, but those standard goals made everything possible because by the last three moves I was earning enough cash to purchase greenery and oceans. The key to my success just might have been the first card I bought and played--a card that gave me one Mc for each titanium and steel each generation. More importantly for me, I am so looking forward to setting it up and playing it again! AND, I think I can take this to my next gaming group gathering and actually teaching others to play along in a very fun game. AND I [...]

Session: Operation Dauntless: The Battles for Fontenay and Rauray, France, June 1944:: The Battle for Cristot

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 16:51:40 +0000

by gebs99 I recently finished playing this scenario over Skype/Vassal. It was a really close battle and I had a lot of fun so I want to share some of the action. I played as the British for this scenario.German Strong point setup:My opponent placed a strong point in the forest hill in 1101 defended by 1 MG platoon, 1 Engineer platoon and 1 AT gun. His second strong point was in the heavy bocage hill 1205, defended by 1 AT gun, 1 IG and 1 MG platoon. His last strong point was set up on West Cristot, in hex 1304 defended by 1 infantry platoon.Initial British Strategy1. Avoid conducting assaults with AFVs against enemy positions with a significant tactical advantage in their favor.2. Avoid the LOS of the AT gun on hill 1205 as much as possible.3. Once the smoke lifts, avoid leaving 2 infantry companies together to reduce risk of casualties from indirect/artillery fire.4. Reduce German defensive capability by eliminating forces and setting up for an offensive on the village hexes on the last turn.Turns 1-3I assaulted hex 1004 with 2 infantry companies +1MG platoon+1 Centaur tank. Then moved in 3 Sherman units and 1 Carrier platoon into positions to encircle 2 German infantry platoons and eliminated them through combat.I launched an assault on 1102, south of the strong point to open up a lane so an infantry company could position itself on its flank in 1201. The AT gun fired accurate shots at British tank units but the strong point was surrounded. Everything was going as planned but then lady luck turned her back on the British. The combat on the surrounded strong point was done on final 4:1 odds and rolled a 3 on 2d6 for a 1/1 result. Disaster, not only did I not take the hex, but I inflicted no casualties, suffered a step loss and exposed myself to AT fire for Turn 2.As expected, my opponent took his AT shots and were both hits. At this point, I realized the dangerous position my infantry company was in but I decided to risk it an conduct a combat on the strong point while shifting and consolidating troops engaged on the South West portion of the scenario to reinforce positions on the Northern edge of the map (notably o[...]

Session: Pericles: The Peloponnesian Wars:: Learning game in Falls Church

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 16:50:14 +0000

by rddfxx Yesterday we put Pericles on the table for our regular once-a-month Saturday Falls Church gaming session. Many moons ago we played a four person playtest with master playtester Wendell and his Amazing Technicolor Prototype, but it was great to have the gorgeous, final production game set. And this is the first time any non-Wendell had read the rules. Two of the four players were Churchill vets, but what I like best about Pericles is the way it builds on the earlier design, making it a lot different. We (well, me mostly) got a few things wrong, here is the summary of notable observations:1. In land battles, the winner loses pieces at roughly half the rate of the loser. Thus, a Spartan cube — mora — on the winning side can offset 4 cubes lost by the losing side. An Athenian cube on the winning side can offset a Spartan loss, or 2 cubes by the Peloponnesian League. Keep in mind, Spartan cubes are 2’s and all other cubes are 1’s. 2. In naval battles, losses are 1:1. And Athenian fleets are 2’s, all other fleets are 1’s. So A winning/losing Athenian fleet offsets 2 losing/winning side fleets. 3. Now for the big stuff. There are three types of victory: A. Automatic victory, as defined for a scenario — not applicable in the scenario we played (The First Peloponnesian War) — usually a big lead in Honor points. B. Grannary victory. Athens is cut off from all on map granaries, but typically the Hellespont. C. Sparta or Athens, either of the two so-called city state territories on the map, is captured by enemy. D. Otherwise, via Honor Points at the end of the game. But here is the biggie — and I didn’t see this before — there are multiple end of game scoring actions (1) Political bonus: each controlling faction gets +5 honor, and each opposition faction -5 honor. This nets out per Sparta vs Athens, but it certainly provides a boost for a factional win/loss (2) Economic bonus: Each side gets 3 Honor for each own base still in play at the end of the game. The total is then split evenly between the factions per side. The odd point always goes to the controll[...]

Session: Star Wars: Rebellion:: Heavy-handed Rodians

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 16:15:25 +0000

by Thoronsul It is a time of Rebellion. Mon Calamari, Bothawui, and Naboo have declared their independence from the Empire. The Empire had a core alliance of Corellia, Mandalore, and Rodia, with Saleucami and Mygeeto also subjugated under their thumb.The Rebel fleet was posted in Felucia at the outbreak of conflict, striking out with a team led by Jan Dodonna, against a small fleet of just one star destroyer and one TIE squadron against two squadron each of Y- and X-wings, as well as a Corellian Corvette. The Emperor himself was aboard the star destroyer though, and turned the tide of battle, decimating all Rebel hopes of striking an early Rebel Assault (first objective drawn). General Tagge Detained Dodonna. Mon Mothma convinced the Corellians to resist the Empire, causing that world to become merely subjugated, but she was captured shortly thereafter by Darth Vader. In Our Most Desperate Hour, Leia Incited Rebellion on subjugated Mygeeto, freeing it from the only stormtrooper in the system. Only one lonely TIE squadron blockaded it. Rieekan attempted to Sabotage Saleucami, but failed, being unnerved by the Emperor's presence in the system. Admiral Ackbar joined the Rebellion, a welcome, though not as diplomatic substitute for Mon Mothma; and Boba Fett took a contract with the Emperor.In the second year of conflict, the force in Rodia, which was massive, containing two star destroyers and the Death Star, as well as countless TIE squadrons, moved upon Naboo, subjugating it. Similarly, Imperial high command chose to squelch the Rebel support in Mon Calamari, bringing the only star destroyer on that half of the galaxy to bear, along with a complement of stormtroopers and and AT-AT. The Rebels were shorthanded, having only three leaders, due to the capture and detention of various peoples (Mothma and Dodonna). Leia Built an Alliance with the peoples of Mygeeto, causing the system to become liberated, with a Rebel garrison only lightly-blockaded. It was neutral, but that was better than Imperial. Admiral Ackbar led a Public Uprising in Mon Calamari, bringing two Y-w[...]

Session: High Frontier (3rd edition):: "Hold my Vodka."

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 16:14:47 +0000

by HikariStarshine (note: This was in a basic game with Radical Factions and flyby rules added)Russia was having a very bad time of it. Very bad, indeed. A series of ill-advised launches, compounded by President-For-Life Putin sending all of the mission-control crew to Siberia every time there was a minor mishap, resulted in a refinery floating in the asteroid belt on a solar sail that had no thrust, followed by a 'rescue' mission that included attempting to use a Kuck Mosquito robonaut while trying to prospect Vesta, which only resulted in getting the refinery into Vestan orbit.The second attempted rescue mission, however, was a success, proving to President Putin that the only way to do work in space was to do *manned* work in space, as a small crew on a Metastable Helium engine successfully dragged the Solar-Pumped MHD Exciplex Laser into the asteroid belt, and acting as a space taxi, took first the refinery, then the laser to Vesta's surface, using Eichsfeldia as a refueling depot each time before the final Vestan landing. Once everything was on the surface of Vesta, celebrations ensued as the world was rapidly industrialized.Of course, this did not satisfy Putin, not by a long shot. After all, ROSCOSMOS had taken three attempts to successfully prospect their target, during which time the B612 Foundation and Anonymous had both built two industrial sites, SpaceX one, and there was a mission for SpaceX that was clearly, slowly but surely headed toward their (game-ending) second. Pointing his governing finger toward the stars, the President-For-Life declared, "We must establish a colony!" But his finger pointed not toward Vesta... no, it was aimed much farther out.SpaceX's flight slowly puttered on as Anonymous began a campaign of burning trollfaces onto as many asteroids as possible, while B612 took a break from looking for earth-endangering asteroids to claim all of Mars as their own. Meanwhile, ROSCOSMOS quietly built a small refinery and a Microfission engine on Vesta, sent their chicken-legged Vestan crew on the two-year tr[...]

Session: Memoir '44: The Battles of Khalkhin-Gol:: Khalkhin-Gol Campaign (Part 1) The Khalkhin-Gol Spark

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 16:10:24 +0000

by jesters_race Khalkhin-Gol Campaign.So I have been waiting some time to get this campaign going with someone from my game group (most of the time we end up with 4 or more so I have put the campaign on the back burner. Well I have got tired of waiting and have decided to go at it solo and to make it worthwhile and record an AAR of the campaign. For the AAR I will be playing through the entire campaign using the simplified campaign rules. I will be posting each battle as its own session report with a link at the end to the next battle in the campaign once it has been posted.Without further ado let’s get started.The Khalkhin-Gol Spark In this scenario we see a mainly infantry force fielded by the Japanese, with their right being all cavalry against a mixed force of Soviets. The Soviet have the new armoured cars from this expansion, both sides have cavalry so I have marked each sides with their nations badges just to tell them apart (I know they are facing different directions but it looks better).Early Game The Japanese start with an assault up the centre to try and tackle the cavalry, though they retreat with light casualties. The Russian cavalry charge the advancing Japanese causing them some losses, removing one of their special national abilities. The Japanese then set all of their cavalry off up the Russians left flank being ambushed in the process. The Russian cavalry in the centre continues its attack and destroys a Japanese infantry unit and weakens another. The Japanese cavalry continue their attack on the Russian left and cause some heavy losses in the armour unit and flood in behind the Russian lines. The Russians act along their entire line only causing some minor loses to the cavalry; they reposition some of their armour and armoured cars in the centre and left.Mid Game The Japanese continue their attack on the Russian left and eliminate the armoured unit, while the Russians fight back and start reducing the Japanese cavalry. The attack in the centre is restarted by the Japanese who cause some lo[...]

Session: Quartermaster General: 1914:: Entente team takes four tries to win first game

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 14:30:38 +0000

by Norbert Chan Don had gotten this game in the mail recently, and Don, Gary, Jean, Ken and Greg had gotten a game in before lunch, with the Central Powers winning by the 12 VP sudden death victory. I had read the rules earlier in the week, and the understanding was that I would pair up with Don since I was going to be the 6th player. When I showed up, Don asked if I was ready to “take the training wheels off”, I said yes, and Don said that he and Gary would pair up. Don and Gary were Austria-Hungary, Greg was Russia, Ken was Germany, I was France, while Jean was US/UK. I noticed that everyone threw away 3 cards to form a discard pile. I told them the rules had changed where you put your 3 discards at the bottom of the deck. No one believed me (sigh), so they checked the rules, and were surprised about that rule. Don/Gary build into Tyrol, while Ken expands into Western Germany. Already I am feeling squeezed on both sides, and I build an Italian army in Rome thinking that was the weak spot if Austria Hungary expands into the Italian Alps. In retrospect, I probably should have built into Picardy to slow the Germans down. By turn 2, Germany has 6 prepared cards down, and they are into Picardy, while Austria Hungary is into Tyrol. Germany has mustard gas (force an opponent to discard a prepared card). Paris falls on turn 3 as I had no shield cards left for defence. Thanks for coming out. I perhaps could have held out for one more turn if I prepared some defence symbols, but I thought I had time to defend myself. I could have used some support from my allies, but there was no help coming. After 3 rounds, the Central leads 10-5, and on the next scoring phase it is 25-13, with a sudden death victory for the Central Powers. Central powers win 25-13 after round 7. US/UK couldn’t get into Europe, but Russia is doing okay. I had gotten flattened by Germany. Game 2: Greg was Austria-Hungary, Ken was Russia, Gary/Don were Germany, Jean was France, while I was UK/US. As the UK play[...]

Session: The Lamps Are Going Out:: Game report: 1914-1915

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 14:27:54 +0000

by jim bailey 1914, Fall – Germany halted in Belgium. Russian attacks on Prussia unsuccessful. AH fails to subdue Serbia, but both Serbian units are spent.1914, Winter – Germany takes the Somme. Serbia conquered and retreated into Albania. Russians attack but cannot take Galicia.1915, Spring – Stalemate in the west has essentially begun. Fresh Russian units are outnumbered. Italy joins the TE. Serbian unit in Albania eliminated.1915, Summer – [At this point I’m going to switch from purely “headlines” to some explanation of why this or that move was made.] Germany reinforces the west only to the point an attack on the Somme or the Rhine can be repulsed. Both air units are placed in the Rhine for the moment; two trenches in the Somme (built previously); one unit built in the Rhine. Germany has assumed that due to favorable WA rolls and events, the WA are at their maximum strength, so the plan is dig in and wait. Russia is pushed out of Lithuania with 4 successful rolls. Russia could retreat into Minsk rather than Estonia in order to consolidate forces, but that would leave an open path to Moscow – even average rolls could put German armies in Moscow, defeating Russia. Unfortunately, this means that Russian forces will be spread out. The Austrians move up with Germany, linking with them so that they can attack Russia in their turn and Germany can attack again before the Russians can refit. Britain spends one fleet to eliminate the AH fleet in the Med. This was a necessary step to invading Gallipoli. The invasion of Gallipoli averted complete disaster because it used a fleet to increase its die roll by 1. The defending unit is not flipped because it won the combat, but this new combat area should be very favorable to the WA as a drain on the Turk and hence Germany.Attack from Basra into unoccupied Baghdad was unsuccessful (good grief!). The attack from Sinai was successful, but so was a guerilla attack in Africa so Britain will be spending PP i[...]

Session: Agricola (Revised Edition):: A Geoff-fan's first session homage

Mon, 17 Apr 2017 14:26:37 +0000

by Casualist This is a feeble attempt at recording a session of Agricola from today between me (Cas) and my daughter (Mil) in the manner of the great Geoff, whose session reports I read with much admiration. I can't comment as wittily as him, and I had my handful of just trying to keep track of the game, but here goes:Round One/MIMIMil - 3W (3)Cas - Occ/Seasonal WorkerMil - 1GCas - DL (2F + 1G)Round Two/Grain UtilizationMil - 1R (2)Cas - 3W (3)Mil - Occ/CarpenterCas - 1C (2)Round Three/FencesMil - 3W (3)Cas - SP + Scullery (-1C -1W)Mil - Fish (3F)Cas - MIMI/Herring Pot (-1C)Round Four/Sheep Cas - 1FCas - 3W (3)Mil - SP + Moldboard Plow (-2W)Cas - Occ/Geologist (-1F)Mil - BR + x (-3W/2R)Round Five/Family Growth + MI Cas - 1FMil - FG + xCas - 1R (3)Mil - PF (1+1)Cas - BR + x (-5W/2R)Round Six/Stone W Cas - 1FMil - 3W (6)Cas - Occ/Master BricklayerMil - 1C (4)Cas - FG + Loam Pit (-1F)Mil - MIMI/CH (-4C)Round Seven/Renovation + MIMI Cas - 1FMil - Sheep (4) burn 4 (8F)Cas - Fish (4F + 3F>Mil - Occ/Scythe Worker (-1F, 1G)Cas - 1R (2)Mil - 3W (3)Cas - DL (2F, 1G, 3C)Round Eight/Boar Cas - 2FMil - 1S (3)Cas - 3W (3)Mil - Fence (2) (-6W)Me MIMI/FP (-2C)I was planning to build a stone oven with my bricklayer superpower, but I was unsure whether I could really forego stones and not clay - in my language bricks are called wall-stones. Turned out, I might actually have been able to.Mil - Sow 2GCas - PFRound Nine/Vegetable Cas - 2FMil - 1C (3)Cas - 3W (3)Mil - 1R (2)Cas - BR (-5W,-2R)Mil - 1Boar (2) burn 2 (6F)Cas - FG + xRound Ten/Cattle Cas - 2FMil - Sheep (3) burn 1 (2F)Cas - SP + Milk Jug (-1C)Mil - Ren (-3C,-1R) + Caravan (-3W,-3F)Cas - 1W (3)Mil - FG + Shifting Cultivation PF (-2F i.e. 1 Sheep) Cas - PF (if memory serves, I honestly forgot to write this one down)Round Eleven/Stone E Cas - 1FCas - 3W (3)Mil - Ren (-3S,-1R) + Bread Paddle (-1W, 1F)Cas - Fence (2) (-6W)Mil - Occ/Scholar (-1F) + BB (-1G, 3F)Cas - Cattle (1) - (3F/ - 1F)Mil[...]